If you haven’t heard of the Equifax data breach by now, you must be living under a rock. And since the incident already has so much coverage, I won’t go into much. Instead, let’s discuss a solution many may not know they have: Mastercard ID Theft Protection.
Equifax Data Breach
For those of you that, by some miracle, haven’t heard of the Equifax data breach, here’s a quick summary. Hackers obtained access to identifying information of 143 million Americans. This information includes things like Social Security Numbers, names, addresses, driver’s license numbers, etc. Other information was comprised too, such as credit card numbers, but to a much lesser extent. And when Equifax announced the breach to the world, they also launched a website.
And when Equifax announced the breach to the world, they also launched a website. Of course, we now know this website is garbage. It’s built on WordPress, which is great for blogging, but not so much for securing sensitive information. Unfortunately, that same site has a form that you can fill-out to see if you’re affected by the breach. And that form asks for REALLY sensitive information. Better yet? If you take their one year of complimentary monitoring service, you waive your right to take legal action. Oh, and after the year is up? Equifax will then charge you for the monitoring service unless you cancel by phone.
A Better Solution
I’m sure many of you have a Mastercard of some sort. Whether it be a HawaiianMiles World Elite Mastercard, a Citi Double Cash, or any one of Citi’s ThankYou Points earning cards, among others. That is, of course, why you read BoardingArea blogs in the first place, right? And if you have a Mastercard, any Mastercard, even a debit Mastercard, you can signup for Mastercard ID Theft Solutions.
While it sounds like a single product, Mastercard ID Theft Solutions is comprised of three different products and services. The first and most important for most of today is ID Theft Alerts. And as you may guess, ID Theft Alerts monitors the Internet for any of the personal information you register and sends you an alert if it’s found being bought or sold online.
Next up, we have Emergency Wallet Replacement. There’s no need to signup for this service like ID Theft Alerts. Instead, if you lose your wallet or it’s stolen, you call 1-800-MASTERCARD, and they’ll help you replace all of your cards and documentation.
Finally, there’s the Expert Resolution Services. Again, like Emergency Wallet Replacement, there’s no need to signup. If you fall victim to ID Theft, simply call 1-800-MASTERCARD, and their expert team will help you with the ID recovery process. Things they’ll help you do include filing an affidavit, canceling accounts, and notifying the major credit bureaus.
And guess what? All of the above services are FREE. Mastercard provides them as a benefit of being a cardholder, much like Priceless Cities.
Mastercard ID Theft Protection Final Thoughts
Signing up for Mastercard ID Theft Protection is a no-brainer. It costs you nothing and helps you monitor your credit for fraud. But if you want to get hands on with your credit, you could also signup for a free service like Credit Karma too. However, these services don’t monitor for the sale and purchase of your information, so it’s probably a good idea to signup for both. You can never have too much piece of mind.