What’s the Difference Between Fraud Alerts and Credit Freezes?

How fraud alerts work Fraud alerts, sometimes called security alerts, are a type of credit report status that can be issued by the any of three credit bureaus.
In order to file an extended alert, you’ll need an identity theft report and a police report indicating that your identity was stolen and/or damage was done to your credit.
How credit freezes work Like fraud alerts, credit freezes, or security freezes, also change the status of your credit reports and freezing your credit grants you free copies of your credit reports.
It should be noted that you can also temporarily or permanently lift a freeze if you apply for a credit card or other credit account.
As you can likely tell from the descriptions, fraud alerts are more of a temporary solution, although they can be extended to accommodate credit monitoring over a longer period of time if you fall victim to identity theft or you’re in the military and deployed.
It’s important to note, though, that while fraud alerts can be somewhat useful in stopping new credit accounts from being opened in your name, you won’t be alerted if someone other than you is using your credit.
This doesn’t mean that freezes are better – indeed, they can be expensive to create and cancel – but because of their extensiveness, freezes allow you to secure and control your reports better than fraud alerts do.
Something to also be aware of is that parents and legal guardians can request a credit freeze for their children to protect their credit until they’re old enough to build their own credit history — placing a fraud alert on your child’s credit isn’t an option.
If, for example, you suspect identity theft but can’t prove it, you’ll likely only be able to file an initial fraud alert.
This is because initial fraud alerts are available to you at any time, while extended fraud alerts will require an identity theft report.

Why It’s Important to Report Identity Theft and How to Do It

Why It’s Important to Report Identity Theft and How to Do It.
No matter how your identity is misused, one of the most important things you should do after you discover it is to report identity theft.
While the victims of identity theft can experience a wide range of feelings afterward, from shock and violation to anger and shame, it’s important not to let any of those stop you from reporting the crime to any and all pertinent businesses and agencies.
How can you report identity theft?
Identity theft can take a great many forms, but most of it can be traced back to specific companies or businesses that will definitely want to know that someone is misusing your information to do business with them.
Most credit card companies, loan services, banks, utility companies and similar businesses have fraud departments that you can contact to disclose the identity theft and get the accounts closed or suspended.
In addition to obtaining copies of all three of your credit reportsfrom the credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax and TransUnion), you should also strongly consider placing a fraud alert on your credit files or going for a full-out credit freeze.
You can obtain free copies of your credit reports once a year through the government owned-and-operated website AnnualCreditReport.com; however, as a victim of identity theft, you can request an additional free copy of your reports.
That said, you are probably going to want to check your credit reports regularly throughout the next year or two for any new problems or to ensure that existing fraud gets successfully removed.
Whether you file a police report or not is ultimately up to you, though it may be required by some businesses to get charges reversed or accounts closed, and it can be helpful in the future if you continue to have problems.

Afraid of Credit Card Fraud?: Here are the preventive measures

Afraid of Credit Card Fraud?
Facing the terror of decline while using credit card means either you are spending so much money that you have maxed out its limit or you have been victimized by the ‘horror’ of credit card fraud.
Our ears have become quite used to listening bizarre stories of outrageous frauds that happen often.
How can we prevent credit card fraud?
Here is a list of safety measures you can follow in order to avoid banking frauds: 1.
Sharing of personal information should be avoided.
Any genuine call from bank will never ask for your pin or OTP over phone conversation.
3. Credit card is more preferable than debit card when shopping online.
Phishing is a trick in which pop-ups or spam emails mimic actual banks or businesses and obtain your personal details, taking advantage of which they can carry out the misdeed.
One should be beware of phishing to avoid such condition.

Dow Jones Customer Data Exposed: Personal Information, Payment Data Was Available Online

Dow Jones Customer Data Exposed: Personal Information, Payment Data Was Available Online.
Read: Verizon Data Leak: 14 Million Customers Records Exposed According to UpGuard, the exposed data includes names, addresses, account information, email addresses, and last four digits of credit card numbers.
He also said information from the Risk and Compliance database did not contain any customer information.
Severinghaus, who described the situation as “data over-exposure, not a leak” said the content was exposed via Amazon cloud and “not the open internet.” UpGuard reported the exposed data was found on an Amazon Web Services (AWS) repository that was configured to allow any “authenticated” AWS users to download the data from the URL where it was hosted.
Read: Voter Registration Data Breach: Unsecure Server Leaves Info On Nearly 200 Million Americans Exposed While UpGuard did not disclose when it informed Dow Jones of the database issue, the company first discovered May 30 and accessed June 1.
“We immediately secured the data once we became aware of the problem,” Severinghaus said.
“We take the security of Dow Jones information very seriously.” The Dow Jones exposure is just the latest case of customer records potentially being exposed because of a misconfigured Amazon server.
Earlier this month 14 million customer records from Verizon, including account PINs, were exposed by a third-party company.
Earlier this year nearly 200 million voter registration files that could be used to identify American voters were discovered on an unsecured Amazon server owned by Republican data analytics firm Deep Root Analytics.
The database contained voter names, dates of birth, home addresses, phone numbers and voter registration details including party affiliation.

​NetApp warns privacy is not synonymous with security

Under privacy laws, organisations should only be collecting the minimal amount of data needed to manage the relationship with a customer, NetApp chief privacy officer Sheila Fitzpatrick has said, noting that if an organisation suffers a breach, holding minimal information can lessen the overall risk. “If you have a cyber attack, you’re going to have to justify why you were collecting certain data,” Fitzpatrick said.
Of concern to Fitzpatrick is that a lot of organisations seem to think privacy is synonymous with security, and that having a security solution in place solves the privacy aspect. “If you’re encrypting data you’re not legally allowed to have, security’s not going to help you,” she said. “If you don’t have your privacy compliance program in place, and you’re not obtaining the consent, and you’re not handling that data in the way that you’re allowed to handle it, but you say, ‘oh, we encrypted it’ — what good does that do you from a privacy perspective if you’re not legally allowed to have that data?”
Speaking with ZDNet while in Sydney for the Data + Privacy Asia Pacific conference last week, California-based Fitzpatrick said that gone are the days when data collection consent is obtained via a terms and conditions (T&Cs) form comprising buzzwords and legal jargon that only someone with a law degree can dissect. “The problem became, the T&Cs were so complicated and ambiguous that you really weren’t consenting to what those organisations were doing with your data; you were consenting to use their service and you were consenting to provide certain information that they needed, but you never really consented to having that data sold to a third-party, to be shared on the internet, to have organisations trawl through your social media to find information for you to be marketed to — there’s no way that you consented to that,” she said.
However, organisations in Europe have always had to obtain the explicit consent of the individual to store data in order to provide goods and services — unless there was no way to provide services without having that data. “The laws were never really clear about what type of consent, whether it had to be explicit, whether implied consent was okay.”
Although the GDPR only applies to organisations that have an establishment in the EU, if they offer goods and services in the EU, or if they monitor the behaviour of individuals in the EU, Fitzpatrick believes it is organisational best practice to look to the most restrictive laws where the organisation has a presence and to map its privacy strategy based on that.

Adultery Site Ashley Madison to Pay $11.2 Million for User Data Breach

Adultery Site Ashley Madison to Pay $11.2 Million for User Data Breach.
The owner of the Ashley Madison adultery website said on Friday it will pay $11.2 million to settle U.S. litigation brought on behalf of roughly 37 million users whose personal details were exposed in a July 2015 data breach.
Ruby Corp, formerly known as Avid Life Media Inc., denied wrongdoing in agreeing to the preliminary class-action settlement, which requires approval by a federal judge in St. Louis.
A word from our sponsor: Having a hard time growing your agency?
Not with Smart Choice!
Benefit from no start-up fees, no lengthy contracts, bonus and contingency sharing, low volume commitments, and the some of the best rated carriers in the industry.
Start today – join now!
Ashley Madison marketed itself as a means to help people, primarily men, cheat on their spouses, and was known for its slogan “Life is short.
Last December, Ruby agreed to pay $1.66 million to settle a probe by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission and several states into lax data security and deceptive practices, also without admitting liability.
According to Friday’s settlement, users with valid claims can recoup up to $3,500 depending on how well they can document their losses attributable to the breach.

Russia hacking row: Moscow demands US return seized mansions

Russia hacking row: Moscow demands US return seized mansions.
Russia has been pressing demands that the US give it access to two diplomatic compounds seized in the US last year.
In December the US expelled 35 Russian diplomats and shut the compounds over suspicions of meddling in US elections.
He was asked by reporters if the spat over the diplomatic compounds had been settled, and he replied: “Almost, almost.”
US officials did not comment and there has been no official press briefing.
Before the talks Russia made clear it was demanding restored access to the facilities.
Which compounds were seized?
Like the Maryland mansion, its location is ideal for eavesdropping on US communications, US officials say President Donald Trump’s team is under investigation over alleged Russian collusion during last year’s presidential campaign.
Mr Trump had been elected to succeed President Obama just weeks before.
Russia would retaliate if no compromise was reached at the meeting between Mr Ryabkov and Mr Shannon, the Russian newspaper Izvestia reported.

Ashley Madison offers to pay $11.2 million to hacking victims

Ashley Madison offers to pay $11.2 million to hacking victims.
Ashley Madison’s parent company has reached a proposed $11.2 million settlement agreement with lawyers representing victims of the cheating site’s 2015 data breach.
The high-profile hack left the personal data of more than 37 million users vulnerable and prompted class action lawsuits against the site’s parent company Avid Life Media and Avid Dating Life, which owned and operated Ashley Madison.
The potential plaintiffs are co-led by law firms Dowd & Dowd, The Driscoll Firm, and Heninger Garrison Davis.
“If the proposed settlement agreement is approved by the Court, ruby will contribute a total of $11.2 million USD to a settlement fund, which will provide, among other things, payments to settlement class members who submit valid claims for alleged losses resulting from the data breach and alleged misrepresentations as described further in the proposed settlement agreement,” it said.
“While ruby denies any wrongdoing, the parties have agreed to the proposed settlement in order to avoid the uncertainty, expense, and inconvenience associated with continued litigation, and believe that the proposed settlement agreement is in the best interest of ruby and its customers,” it added.
The company says that since July 2015, it has implemented “numerous remedial measures” to boost the security of customers’ data.
Security expert Itay Glick, CEO of data breach protection specialist Votiro, told Fox News that the proposed settlement should be viewed within the broader context of the breach. “However, I think they may be able to get away with it, as not all people would like to admit they own an account there.”
Despite the massive 2015 hack, Ashley Madison recently hit 52 million users.

$7 Million Lost in CoinDash ICO Hack

$7 Million Lost in CoinDash ICO Hack.
An initial coin offering (ICO) for a little-know startup project called CoinDash was abruptly halted today when it was revealed the sale had been compromised shortly after it began.
In total, the ICO was able to raise $7.53m before the ethereum address it was using to solicit funds was altered to a fake one by an unidentified hacker, resulting in the ether going to another source.
At the time of publication, the CoinDash website has been shut down, and the project is asking investors who have been affected to submit information to the provided link to collect the CoinDash token (CDT) they should be rewarded through the sale.
The company’s statement reads: “Contributors that sent ETH to the fraudulent Ethereum address, which was maliciously placed on our website, and sent ETH to the CoinDash.io official address will receive their CDT tokens accordingly.”
Notably, as the project is still under attack, and the sale has been terminated.
In a statement, CoinDash urged investors not to send any ether to any address, since “transactions sent to any fraudulent address after the website was shut down will not be compensated.”
The hacking of this ICO is reminiscent of last year when $50m was stolen in a similar fashion from a project called The DAO.
As such, the event will likely again draw attention to possible security issues in ICO funding, amid their escalating popularity.
Have breaking news or a story tip to send to our journalists?

Qatar: Alleged UAE hacking ‘unfortunate,’ violation of law

FILE – This June 6, 2017, file photo shows a parked Qatari plane in Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar.
The United Arab Emirates orchestrated the hacking of a Qatari government news site in May, planting a false story that was used as a pretext for the current crisis between Qatar and several Arab countries, according to a report Sunday, July 16, by The Washington Post.
In early June, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut ties with Qatar and moved to isolate the small, but wealthy Gulf nation, canceling air routes between their capitals and Qatar’s and closing their airspace to Qatari flights.
(Hadi Mizban, File/Associated Press) DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Qatar, the tiny Gulf state being isolated by its neighbors, said Monday the reported involvement of the United Arab Emirates in hacking its government news site in May is “unfortunate” and a breach of agreements among the Gulf countries.
The Washington Post, quoting unnamed U.S. intelligence officials, reported Sunday that the UAE orchestrated the hacking and planted a false story that was used as a pretext for the crisis between Qatar and four Arab countries.
The UAE along with Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Bahrain cut diplomatic ties and severed air, land and sea links with Qatar in early June over allegations that it supports extremist ideology — a charge Qatar denied.
The crisis has dragged on for more than a month with neither side showing signs of backing down.
Qatar maintained from the beginning that the quotes attributed to its ruler were the result of a hacking.
“This criminal act represents a clear violation and breach of international law and of the bilateral and collective agreements signed between the member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council, as well as collective agreements with the Arab League, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, and the United Nations,” he said.
Sheikh Saif said a Qatari government investigation into the hacking is ongoing and that prosecutors will “take all necessary legal measures to bring to justice the perpetrators and instigators of this crime.” Copyright 2017 The Associated Press.