Unfortunately, news broke out today that hackers are threatening to leak 3 BILLION records from a hacked database belonging to a Florida based company that does background checks. Yes, that’s BILLIONS (not millions). If you live in the US, Cana or UK, it’s quite likely you may be affected.

If you do not have a credit lock (or freeze) in place, it’s probably a good idea to do it now before the records are sold or published. Credit locks are offered free of charge by the major credit reporting bureaus. Here’s how they work:

You contact each credit bureau via the Web or an automated telephone line and request a credit lock. The system will ask you a few questions to verify that in fact it is you that are calling and then ask you to create an unlock PIN. Write the pin down on paper and keep in a safe or under lock and key. Once this is done, nobody can open a new credit account using your social security number.

When you do want to open a new line of credit for a vehicle or to apply for a new credit card, you call the credit agencies and request an unlock. The system will prompt you for the number of days you wish to unlock your credit. During this time interval, you will be able to apply for new credit lines. After the time period expires, the credit lock will go back into effect.

It’s important to do this because many of us have data that has been breached and crooks can open credit lines under our names with the data available in the dark Web. Before the news broke about about this latest hack, CISA estimates that 47% of Americans have had their personal information breached and available for purchase on the dark Web. After this latest hack, that number will probably be a lot higher.

Here’s information on how to put a credit lock and prevent crooks from opening credit lines under your name.


Here’s a link to the article detailing the aforementioned hack.


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