Guarding Against Business Identity Theft

Guarding Against Business Identity Theft

Individuals aren’t the only targets for identity theft. Corporate, also known as commercial identity theft, saw a 46% increase last year according to the National Cybersecurity Society (NCSS). Although businesses of all sizes are at risk, small businesses are particularly vulnerable. “Small business identity theft—stealing a business’ identity to commit fraud—is big business for identity thieves,” remarks Mary Ellen Seale, CEO of NCSS.

 

She explains, “Unlike larger corporations, small businesses don’t always have the required security controls in place to detect and deter fraudulent activity, which can make them easier targets. There is also a general unawareness, among large and small businesses alike, of the magnitude of the threat and the devastating effects that business identity theft can have.”

 

Stealing an organization’s identity takes a lot less work than one might think. State laws require the public disclosure of proprietary business information in annual reports, names and addresses of key company personnel as well as the employee identification number (EIN). All of this information can be used by thieves to apply for a line of credit or loan as well as intercept business credit card information.

 

What can business owners do to help mitigate their risk?

 

– Educate your employees about phishing scams. Phishers aren’t just targeting your business … they are grabbing your customers, employees, partners and vendors. Make sure your employees know what red flags to look for when they receive an email that is asking for an action from them. Examples include bad grammar, misspelled words, links to unfamiliar websites and attachments.

 

– Don’t post sensitive company information on your website.

 

– Stay on top of computer security updates.

 

– Check your credit reports regularly.

 

– Follow the IRS new procedures to protect businesses. Visit https://www.irs.gov/individuals/identity-theft-guide-for-business-partnerships-and-estate-and-trusts for detailed information.

 

– File your company’s annual report on time and regularly check the secretary of state’s website. Keep in mind that if you operate your business in more than one state, each state may have their own due date.

 

Unfortunately, identity theft is here to stay. With the number of incidents growing each year, and financial losses piling up, it’s more important than ever for businesses to be vigilant. Do you have an anti-phishing plan for your business? Please contact us if you need assistance developing one or educating your employees about the topic.

 

Be vigilant. Be strong. Stay in the know. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact our Member Services immediately. We are always available for you 24/7/365 at 888.966.4827 (GUARD).

 

Photo by Artem Beliaikin on Unsplash

Data Breach Alert: T-Mobile 100 Million Impacted

Data Breach Alert: T-Mobile 100 Million Impacted

The Associated Press reported yesterday that communications giant T-Mobile confirmed there was unauthorized access to ‘some T-Mobile data’ but that the company is still determining the scope of the breach and who was affected. T-Mobile is actively investigating the leak after someone took to an online underground forum offering to sell personal information from more than 100 million cellphone users.

 

According to Vice’s Motherboard report, the data came from T-Mobile servers and “includes social security numbers, phone numbers, names, physical addresses, unique IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) numbers, and driver license information.” Motherboard also reported that they had seen samples of the data, and confirmed they contained accurate information on T-Mobile customers.

 

The seller on the underground forum was asking for 6 bitcoin, which is about $270,000, for a subset of the data containing 30 million social security numbers and driver licenses. The hacker said that they are privately selling the rest of the data at the moment. For more in-depth details about the hack, you can read the KrebsonSecurity article HERE.

 

A statement on the T-Mobile website reads “We are confident that the entry point used to gain access has been closed, and we are continuing our deep technical review of the situation across our systems to identify the nature of any data that was illegally accessed. This investigation will take some time but we are working with the highest degree of urgency.” The statement also included that the company takes the protection of their customers very seriously and that T-Mobile is “conducting an extensive analysis alongside with forensic experts to understand the validity of these claims, and are coordinating with law enforcement.”

 

If you or a family member has been a T-Mobile customer and suspect your data has been compromised, please contact us as soon as possible. We are always available for you 24/7/365 at 888.966.GUARD (4827). Our Member Services can also be emailed at memberservices@guardwellid.com.

 

Photo credit: John Tuesday on unsplash.com

University of California and StreetEasy: Dark Web Fraud Alert

University of California and StreetEasy: Dark Web Fraud Alert

Our teams have discovered extremely large sets of compromised data on the Dark Web. The latest two websites involved are University of California and StreetEasy.com.

 

The University of California (UC) is the world’s leading public research university system. Like several hundred other institutions throughout the country, including universities, government institutions and private companies, UC has been using a vendor service called Accellion File Transfer Appliance (FTA) to transfer information. Accellion was the target of an international cyberattack where the perpetrators exploited a vulnerability in Accellion’s program and attacked roughly 100 organizations. The attackers are now attempting to get money from organizations and individuals.

 

The breach origination date was March 31, 2021. Information stolen includes names, addresses, SSNs, as well as some email addresses and medical IDs.

 

StreetEasy.com is New York City’s leading local real estate marketplace on mobile and the Web, providing comprehensive listings and market data. The approximate breach size is 990,290 and originated in June of 2016. Data exposed includes passwords, first and last names, email addresses, and user IDs.

 

Be vigilant. Be strong. Stay in the know. If you have visited these websites in the past or have done business with them, please contact our Member Services immediately. We are always available for you 24/7/365 at 888.966.GUARD (4827).

 

Photo credit by Erfan Parhizi via unsplash.com.

Zoofari 2021: Through the Zoo

Zoofari 2021: Through the Zoo

We are so excited that Zoofari is back in 2021! Once again, we are a sponsor of this ‘party of the year’ in the most unique space in the city. From dinner-by-the-bite samples by Cincinnati’s amazing local restaurants, creative cocktails and entertainment, as an attendee you will also be able to wander through themed sections of the Zoo.

 

Individual tickets and ticket packages are available. Visit http://cincinnatizoo.org/events/zoofari/ for more information. We hope to see you there!

The Biggest Ransomware Attack Ever

The Biggest Ransomware Attack Ever

On Friday, July 2nd, an affiliate of the REvil gang (Russian-linked) infected millions of victims in at least 17 countries via the US IT software company Kayesa. Our cybersecurity team has learned that the company’s software was used to slip into victims’ systems, which they’re now holding hostage.

 

The hackers have demanded $70 million in cryptocurrency to end what is now the biggest ransomware attack on record. The attack was specifically timed for the 4th of July holiday weekend when most office workers would be out of office. As reported in The Washington Post, most of the 1,500 victimized organizations were public agencies and small businesses.

 

The ransomware attack “has temporarily shutdown hundreds of Sweden’s Coop grocery stores because the cash registers locked up. The full scope of the attack probably won’t be known for quite some time.” The Associated Press noted that “due to the potential scale of this incident, the FBI and CISA may be unable to respond to each victim individually.”

 

Unfortunately this is not REvil’s first attack. Last month, timed with the Memorial Day weekend, the group extorted $11 million from meat supplier JBS after forcing it to shut down all of its manufacturing facilities.

 

Please contact us 24/7/365 at 888.966.4827 (GUARD) if you have any concerns or suspect identity theft. Additionally, you can email memberservices@guardwellid.com. Day or night, we’ve got your back and will always be open for you.

 

Photo by Bermix Studio on Unsplash

Guard Well Awarded Top Identity and Access Management 2021 Solution Provider

Guard Well Awarded Top Identity and Access Management 2021 Solution Provider

Enterprise Security Magazine has once again recognized Guard Well Identity Theft Solutions in their CIOReview as a top Identity and Access Management Solution Provider for 2021. In previous years, the publication featured Guard Well’s Founder and CEO, E. Allan Hilsinger, in Guard Well Identity Theft Solutions: Shifting a Liability and Expense Into Profit and Protecting Your Employees and Company Bottom Line.

 

Located in Cincinnati, Ohio, Guard Well is celebrating ten years of protecting the American workforce. “We have successfully implemented comprehensive identity management and protection programs for over a decade,” Hilsinger states. Employers partner with Guard Well to protect their employee population from the damages of identity theft. “Every program includes complete fraud resolution, thus allowing victimized employees to concentrate on core work responsibilities instead of spending countless business hours trying to resolve the problem on their own.”

 

The article also discusses how Guard Well partners with benefit brokers, third-party administrators (TPAs), insurance companies, and financial institutions … not just employers. “We have also disrupted the enterprise data risk mitigation space with a new solution that wipes and certifies IT hard drives at no fee, repurposes the gear, which is the ‘greenest’ solution available, and then share the profit with the client.” To learn more about the Data Risk Mitigation solution, visit the Guard Well website.

 

To read the article, Comprehensive Identity Management, Protection and Resolution in full, click HERE.

 

Guard Well is available 24/7/365 at 888.966.GUARD (4827) and memberservices@guardwellid.com.

Stolen Data of 533 Million Facebook Users Leaked Online

Stolen Data of 533 Million Facebook Users Leaked Online

Facebook, the most popular social media platform worldwide, has experienced another leak. This weekend we learned that the phone numbers and personal data of 533 million users were published for free.

 

Business Insider reported that “the exposed data includes the personal information of over 533 million Facebook users from 106 countries, including over 32 million records on users in the US, 11 million on users in the UK, and 6 million on users in India. It includes their phone numbers, Facebook IDs, full names, locations, birthdays, bios, and, in some cases, email addresses.”

 

For more information, click HERE.

 

Be vigilant. Be strong. If you have any concerns or think you have been a victim, please contact our Member Services immediately. We are always available for you 24/7/365 at 888.966.GUARD (4827).

 

Photo credit: Tim Bennett on Unsplash

RedDorz and Foxtons: Dark Web Fraud Alert

RedDorz and Foxtons: Dark Web Fraud Alert

Our teams have discovered extremely large sets of compromised data on the Dark Web. The latest two websites involved are RedDorz.com and Foxtons.com.

 

RedDoorz.com is a Singapore-based hotel management and booking platform. Their breach size involves 5.8 million records: first name, last name, email address, password, gender, phone number, and date of birth. The origin date was September 2020.

 

Foxtons.co.uk is a British estate agency company dealing with both listings and sales. Alexander Hall is a subsidiary of Foxtons and provides mortgage services and advice since 1992. Their breach size involves 2.9 million records: first name, last name, email address, userid, and password. The origin date of this breach is unknown.

 

Be vigilant. Be strong. If you have visited these websites in the past or have done business with them, please contact our Member Services immediately. We are always available for you 24/7/365 at 888.966.GUARD (4827).

 

Photo credit by https://unsplash.com – Erfan Parhizi

 

Dramatic Spike in Unemployment Fraud: What You Need to Know

We have seen a dramatic spike in unemployment fraud, PPP fraud and SBA loan fraud.

 

Some of you may have received or will be receiving unemployment benefits. Or, maybe you are an employer and have received notice that an employee of yours applied for unemployment benefits. The thieves simply apply for benefits or loans using your PII or confidential business information.

 

Your state’s Department of Jobs & Services is aware that many of these applications are fraudulent. Several states, such as Ohio, are in process of launching an online option for employers to report potential fraud on behalf of multiple current or former employees. For information about Ohio, please click HERE.

 

Be vigilant. Be strong. If you are concerned that you or an employee has been a victim of unemployment fraud, please reach out to Member Services. We are available for you 24/7/365 at 888.966.GUARD (4827).

Romwe.com Breach Impacting 23 Million

Romwe.com Breach Impacting 23 Million

Our security teams have recently discovered several large sets of compromised data on the Dark Web. The website, Romwe.com, has been affected.

 

Romwe is a Chinese fashion retailer founded in 2008. Headquartere in Nanjing, China, Romwe deals with a wide range of trending fashion items for men, women and children. The breach date was July 2020 and impacts 23 million people. The type of data exposed includes email, password and telephone number.

 

If you have visited the romwe.com website or have engaged in business activity with this company, please call us at 888.966.GUARD (4827) to speak with a fraud resolution specialist. Likewise, if you have questions or concerns feel free to call anytime. We are available for you 24/7/365.