Once again we have an announcement of a major data breach.  This time it is StockX, which is an online seller of sneakers, streetwear, handbags and luxury watches. StockX has just announced that it suffered a data breach in which personal information of 6.8 million of its users including customer names, email addresses, shipping addresses, usernames, hashed passwords, and purchase histories were compromised.

Many of us are suffering from what is being called “data breach fatigue” as a result of which we may not tend to take seriously the threat that data breaches present.  While in this case, the data breach which goes back to May did not include credit card information or Social Security numbers, it is still significant.  In response to the data breach, StockX is offering twelve months of free fraud protection services.

TIPS

If you have been a customer of StockX, you should use this link to go to its website to learn more details about the data breach as well as to enroll in the free services being offered.  https://stockx.com/news/update-on-data-security-issue/

Everyone else should consider this data breach as an opportunity to consider how protected you are from future data breaches.

If you have not yet frozen your credit with each of the three major credit reporting agencies, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion, you should do so now to protect yourself from possible identity theft. it is free and easy to do.

To get the maximum protection from identity theft, it is important to freeze your credit at each of the three major credit reporting agencies. Here are links to each of them with instructions about how to get a credit freeze:
https://www.freeze.equifax.com/Freeze/jsp/SFF_PersonalIDInfo.jsp
https://www.transunion.com/credit-freeze/place-credit-freeze
https://www.experian.com/freeze/center.html

One of the biggest lessons from the myriad of data breaches is to make sure that you use unique passwords for every online account that you have in order to avoid having a sensitive account, such as your online banking account compromised because you use the same password as you do for another relatively meaningless account that had poor security which led to a data breach in which your password was stolen.

Creating and remembering strong, unique passwords for each of your accounts is not as difficult as it may appear.  You can start with a strong base password constructed from a phrase, such as IDon’tLikePasswords. Add a few symbols like !!! and then adapt it for each account you have so that you will have a secure and easy to remember password for each of your online accounts.   Thus, your Amazon password could be IDon’tLikePasswords!!!AMA.

Also, with your email address commonly known by many scammers, you can expect to receive more phishing and more dangerous specifically targeted spear phishing emails that attempt to lure you into clicking on links containing malware or try to convince you to provide personal information that can be used to make you a victim of identity theft.  Never click on links or provide personal information in response to an email or text message unless you are absolutely sure that the email or text message is legitimate.

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