How many times your information has been exposed to hackers

Number of pieces of your information
exposed to hackers:

Have you applied for a job with or worked for the federal government since 2000?

  • Yes
  • No

Have you signed up for an account with these websites?

Did you have health insurance from these providers?

Did you use a credit or debit card at these retailers?

How many times your information has been exposed to hackers

What should you do now?

Review your account statements for any fraudulent purchases, as well as your credit report. Make sure you have different passwords for different accounts: in particular, don’t use the same password for your bank accounts, email and e-commerce accounts.If you were the victim of more than one breach, some security experts recommend freezing your credit. To do so, call Equifax, Experian or TransUnion and ask to have your account frozen. The credit agency will mail you a one-time PIN or password to unfreeze your account later. If you plan on applying for a new job, renting an apartment or buying insurance, you will have to thaw a freeze temporarily and pay a fee to refreeze the account.

    Why does this keep happening?

    The Internet was built for openness and speed, not for security. As more and more services, infrastructure and personal information move online, they have all become targets for hackers, who constantly scan the Internet for potential security holes and entry points. At government agencies, old, out-of-date systems and budget shortfalls have left information vulnerable. Security experts say there is no way to keep hackers out of systems with traditional defenses like firewalls and antivirus software. With breaches now the norm, organizations are finally moving towards more modern defenses, like monitoring software that can pick up unusual network activity and two-factor authentication, a system that requires employees and Internet users to enter a second, one-time password when they log in from a new computer. But security experts say the only way information can be protected is to scramble it with encryption technology that makes it unreadable to hackers.

      How can you protect yourself in the future?

      It’s pretty simple: You can’t. But you can take a few steps to make things harder for criminals. Turn on two-factor authentication, whenever possible. Most banking sites and ones like Google, Apple, Twitter and Facebook offer two-factor authentication. Change your passwords frequently and do not use the same password across websites. Vigilantly monitor your bank accounts and credit report. Do not enter sensitive information into websites that do not encrypt your connection. Look for a lock symbol next to the web address whenever entering sensitive information and do not enter it if you cannot see the lock symbol.

        How can I learn more about specific attacks?

          Note: None of your responses are collected or retained. Not all branches of a retail store or website users were affected in every data breach. For more details about specific locations and timing of security breaches, refer to the links above.