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Security Alert and Safeguards

How do I know if my information was included in the data that was inadvertently posted?

The Comptroller’s office sent letters to all individuals who may have been affected by this incident.

View the Data Exposure Grid to see who could be affected.

What can I do now if my information was affected?

  1. STEP 1: Explore credit monitoring services.

    An offer of free credit monitoring was available to affected individuals during a 90-day period beginning April 29, 2011 through July 27, 2011.

  2. STEP 2: Consider placing a fraud alert on your credit file.

    In addition to signing up for credit monitoring, you can sign up for a free, 90-day fraud alert to be placed on your credit files by contacting any one of the three major national credit bureaus – this typically takes less than five minutes. Though the Comptroller's office would like to automatically take this action on behalf of all those affected, the consent of each individual customer is required to set up these alerts. Contact one of the national credit bureaus at:

    You can renew the free fraud alert every 90 days.

    If you've been a victim of identity theft, you can have an extended, seven-year fraud alert placed on your credit report by providing the consumer reporting company with an Identity Theft Report.

  3. STEP 3: Order your free credit report.

    You are entitled under U.S. law to one free credit report annually from each of the three national credit bureaus. To order your free credit report, visit, call toll-free at (877) 322-8228, or complete the Annual Credit Report Request Form (PDF, 41K) on the U.S. Federal Trade Commission’s website at and mail it to Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281. The three credit bureaus provide free annual credit reports only through the website, toll-free number or request form.

    When you receive your credit report, review it carefully. Look for accounts you did not open. Look in the “inquiries” section for names of creditors from whom you haven’t requested credit. Some companies bill under names other than their store or commercial names. The credit bureau will be able to tell you when that is the case.

    Look in the “personal information” section for any inaccuracies in your information (such as home address and Social Security number). If you see anything you do not understand, call the credit bureau at the telephone number on the report. Errors in this information may be a warning sign of possible identity theft.

    You should notify the credit bureaus of any inaccuracies in your report, whether due to error or fraud, as soon as possible so the information can be investigated and, if found to be in error, corrected. If there are accounts or charges you did not authorize, immediately notify the appropriate credit bureau by telephone and in writing. If you find that any accounts have been tampered with or opened fraudulently, close them immediately. To ensure that you do not become responsible for any debts or charges, use the ID Theft Affidavit Form (PDF, 106K) to help make your case with creditors.

  4. STEP 4: Consider placing a security freeze on your credit file.

    You may wish to place a "security freeze" (also known as a "credit freeze") on your credit file. A security freeze is designed to prevent potential creditors from accessing your credit file at the credit bureaus without your consent. There may be fees for placing, liftin, and/or removing a security freeze. Unlike a fraud alert, you must place a security freeze on your credit file at each credit bureau individually. Since the instructions for establishing a security freeze and fees vary among the credit bureaus, please contact the three national credit bureaus to find out more information.

    • Equifax
      Place a security freeze by calling 1-877-478-7625.
    • Experian
      Place a security freeze by calling 1-888-397-3742.
    • TransUnion
      Place a security freeze by calling 1-888-909-8872.

    The credit bureaus may require proper identification prior to honoring your request. For example, you may be asked to provide:

    • your full name with middle initial and generation (such as Jr., Sr., II, III)
    • your Social Security number
    • your date of birth
    • proof of your current residential address (such as a current utility bill)
    • addresses where you have lived over the past five years
    • a legible copy of a government-issued identification card (such as a state driver???s license or military ID card).
  5. STEP 5: Learn more about steps you can take to fight identity theft.
  6. STEP 6: Read about ways you can detect identity theft.

What is the concern if your SSN is compromised?

  • Banks and other financial institutions generally require a Social Security number to set up accounts and apply for loans and other lines of credit.
  • Identity thieves can use your personal information for activities such as opening credit lines or checking accounts, making purchases using your existing bank account or credit card, getting a bogus driver's license or Social Security card, making long distance calls or applying for a job. However, you can take steps to protect your identity.
  • If you suspect your personal information has been compromised, it’s paramount that you closely monitor your financial profiles for signs of theft and other misuse.

See How to Detect Identify Theft and Proactive Steps to Protect Your Identity for additional important precautions you can take now.