SDCGO Members and Supporters,
By now you have heard about the database leak by the State of California. The name, address, and age of everyone who has a California CCW was posted to a California DOJ webpage for the entire world to see.
This is completely and totally unacceptable. Whether it was incompetence or malfeasance, it is horribly offensive. We will do our part as an organization to ensure there is an investigation, people are held accountable, and appropriate lawsuits happen.
I have received more emails, texts, phone calls, and messages about this database debacle than anything ever in the history of SDCGO. We hear you, and we are just as outraged.
What can you do now?
While lawsuits and investigations are being coordinated and considered, this is a great time for you to evaluate all that you are doing to remain safe and secure against all attacks. As bad as this is, there are activities people do every day that put them at far more risk of being the victim of crime. Are you doing everything you can do to make sure you and your family stay safe?
- Consider security systems and cameras at your house.
- Make sure all your virus software is installed and updated.
- Consult with security professionals to make sure your home, computer, and business are all protected.
- Monitor your credit. One of the best ways to protect yourself from identity theft is to monitor your credit history. To obtain free copies of your credit reports from the three major credit bureaus go to https://www.annualcreditreport.com.
- Consider placing a free credit freeze on your credit report. Identity thieves will not be able to open a new credit account in your name while the freeze is in place. You can place a credit freeze by contacting each of the three major credit bureaus:
- Place a fraud alert on your credit report. A fraud alert helps protect you against the possibility of someone opening new credit accounts in your name. A fraud alert lasts 90 days and can be renewed. To post a fraud alert on your credit file, you must contact one of the three major credit reporting agencies listed above. Keep in mind that if place a fraud alert with any one of the three major credit reporting agencies, the alert will be automatically added by the other two agencies as well.
- Additional Resources. If you are a victim of identity theft, contact your local police department or sheriff’s office right away. You may also report identity theft and generate a recovery plan using the Federal Trade Commission’s website. For more information and resources visit the Attorney General’s website.
There are endless sources, articles, books, and professionals that can give you advice. Everyone's situation is different, but the worst thing you can do is nothing. The risk of you being targeted due to this CCW data dump by the state is likely to be low, but use this as a catalyst to make sure you are doing all that you should to stay safe. If anything does happen, contact law enforcement and SDCGO immediately. We are happy to help in any way we are able.
Together, We Will Win. It is not just our motto. It is how we live. Let us know if you need help.
Michael A. Schwartz