5 Tips for Consumers Impacted by the Michaels Breach - WBAY

5 Tips for Consumers Impacted by the Michaels Breach

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On Thursday, Michaels Stores, Inc. announced up to 2.6 million cards may have been exposed during a data breach at its stores in the United States.  The list of stores includes 17 locations in Wisconsin.

If you think your card was compromised during this breach, there are some steps you can take to protect your information.

  1. Call your bank or credit card company. 
  2. Monitor your statements. The Wisconsin Better Business Bureau advises you check your statements online -- don't wait for it to come in the monthly mail. This is especially important for debit card users, since these take funds directly out of your financial account and don't carry the same protections as credit card accounts, the BBB says.
  3. Monitor your credit. Federal law allows you to request one free credit report every 12 months from the three nationwide credit reporting companies -- Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Go to www.AnnualCreditReport.com or call toll-free 1-877-322-8228
  4. Michaels is offering free identity protection and credit monitoring services to affected customers in the U.S. for 12 months.  Call 1-877-412-7145 for more information.
  5. Challenge unfamiliar charges. If you see a charge you're certain you didn't make, ask the merchant for a credit, no matter how small. The Better Business Bureau says identity thieves sometimes make small, unauthorized charges first -- testing whether the card works and if you'll notice. If the merchant won't reverse the charge, call your credit card's issuing bank and find out the process for disputing a charge. It's helpful to save your receipts, the Wisconsin BBB adds.

 

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