Fears of identity theft and breaches of bank accounts run through the minds of safety-conscious people on a near-daily basis. The number of those with such fears increased dramatically recently due to the unfortunate news of the Equifax breach. Equifax is one of the top three credit reporting agencies in the United States. The company houses personal and financial data connected to millions of people. The data breach that affected that company positively has millions worried. While no one knows how the data breach will affect him or her, steps can be taken to protect against the fallout of compromised information.

Order a Copy of Your Credit Report

Reviewing your most current credit report to see if any activity has occurred without you knowing about it. An identity thief may not have touched your accounts, but he/she may have opened new accounts in your name in another state. Things like this do happen. Also, look for bank accounts opened in your name or if anyone has applied for a loan.

Stay on Top of All Accounts

Don’t be someone who lets his/her credit card company automatically subtract the minimum monthly payment and never look at the balance. Don’t ignore the balances on your checking, savings, and money market accounts. Stay on top of your accounts and monitor activity at all times. Otherwise, an unauthorized transaction may take place without you even knowing what’s going on.

Request Warning Alerts on Your Credit Cards

Depending on the credit card company, automated emails or text messages can be sent to alert the cardholder about specific transactions. If a charge of more than $100 or any international charge is logged, you would get an immediate notification. When the remaining balance drops below a certain level, you can be notified. Simple alerts such as these allow you to respond quickly in an emergency situation.

Sign Up with an Identity Monitoring Service

Identity monitoring companies keep tabs on financial and personal information and can do so at very reasonable rates. The second someone tries to open a bank account in your name, the identity theft monitoring service can let you know. While you might not be able to prevent someone from stealing your identity and attempting to use the information, you can learn about it happening through a monitoring service.

Whatever you do, don’t delay. The quicker you move to address a potential financial disaster, the quicker the problem can be effectively managed.