Strategic Benefits Advisors, Inc. Provides Notice of Data Event

ATLANTA, Dec. 31, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Strategic Benefits Advisors, Inc. (“SBA” or the “Company”), an Atlanta-based third-party benefits consulting firm, is making individuals aware of an incident that may affect the privacy of certain information.  Although SBA is unaware of any actual or attempted misuse of such information, the Company is providing notice of the event so potentially affected individuals may take steps to better protect their information from misuse, should they feel it appropriate to do so.

What Happened?  On September 19, 2021, SBA learned that it was the victim of a criminal cyberattack. SBA promptly took steps to secure its systems and commenced an investigation into the nature and scope of the incident.  SBA has been working diligently to investigate this incident and confirm any information that may be affected.  While the investigation was able to confirm that certain files were accessed and/or acquired by the criminal actor, SBA has been unable to determine all of the addresses related to individuals whose information was potentially accessed and/or acquired.

What Information Was Involved? While the investigation to determine the full scope of information affected may vary by individual, the involved SBA systems may have contained the following types of information at the time of the incident: names, addresses, and Social Security numbers. SBA is unaware of any actual or attempted misuse of such information.

What Is SBA Doing?  The confidentiality, privacy, and security of information within SBA’s care are among the Company’s highest priorities.  Upon learning of the event, SBA immediately took steps to secure the systems and to investigate the full scope of the incident. SBA has taken additional steps to further enhance the security of its systems.  Although SBA is unaware of any actual or attempted misuse of any information, the Company is sending written notification to all potentially impacted individuals for whom SBA could obtain address information and providing information on steps that may be taken to best protect personal information.

What You Can Do. SBA encourages individuals to remain vigilant against incidents of identity theft and fraud by reviewing their account statements and explanation of benefits and monitoring their free credit reports for suspicious activity and to detect errors. Individuals may also review and consider the information and resources outlined in the Steps Individuals Can Take to Protect Their Personal Information, included below and available on SBA’s website.

For More Information. If individuals have additional questions, please call the dedicated assistance line at (877) 535-4637 (toll free), 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m., Eastern Time, Monday through Friday and 11:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m., Eastern Time, Saturday and Sunday, excluding major U.S. holidays.  Individuals may also write to SBA at 2392 Mt Vernon Rd #200, Atlanta, GA 30338.

Steps Individuals Can Take to Protect Their Personal Information

Under U.S. law, a consumer is entitled to one free credit report annually from each of the three major credit reporting bureaus, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. To order a free credit report, individuals may visit www.annualcreditreport.com or call, toll-free, 1-877-322-8228.  Individuals may also directly contact the three major credit reporting bureaus listed below to request a free copy of their credit report.

Consumers have the right to place an initial or extended “fraud alert” on their credit file at no cost.  An initial fraud alert is a 1-year alert that is placed on a consumer’s credit file.  Upon seeing a fraud alert display on a consumer’s credit file, a business is required to take steps to verify the consumer’s identity before extending new credit.  If an individual is a victim of identity theft, the individual is entitled to an extended fraud alert, which is a fraud alert lasting seven years.  Should an individual wish to place a fraud alert, please contact any one of the three major credit reporting bureaus listed below.

As an alternative to a fraud alert, consumers have the right to place a “credit freeze” on a credit report, which will prohibit a credit bureau from releasing information in the credit report without the consumer’s express authorization.  The credit freeze is designed to prevent credit, loans, and services from being approved in individuals’ names without their consent.  However, individuals should be aware that using a credit freeze to take control over who gets access to the personal and financial information in their credit report may delay, interfere with, or prohibit the timely approval of any subsequent request or application individuals make regarding a new loan, credit, mortgage, or any other account involving the extension of credit.  Pursuant to federal law, individuals cannot be charged to place or lift a credit freeze on their credit report.  To request a security freeze, individuals will need to provide the following information:

  1. Full name (including middle initial as well as Jr., Sr., II, III, etc.);
  2. Social Security number;
  3. Date of birth;
  4. Addresses for the prior two to five years;
  5. Proof of current address, such as a current utility bill or telephone bill;
  6. A legible photocopy of a government-issued identification card (state driver’s license or ID card, etc.); and
  7. A copy of either the police report, investigative report, or complaint to a law enforcement agency concerning identity theft if an individual is a victim of identity theft.

Should an individual wish to place a fraud alert or credit freeze, please contact the three major credit reporting bureaus listed below:

Equifax

Experian

TransUnion

https://www.equifax.com/personal/credit-report-services/

https://www.experian.com/help/

https://www.transunion.com/credit-help

888-298-0045

1-888-397-3742

833-395-6938

Equifax Fraud Alert, P.O. Box 105069 Atlanta, GA 30348-5069

Experian Fraud Alert, P.O. Box 9554, Allen, TX 75013

TransUnion Fraud Alert, P.O. Box 2000, Chester, PA 19016

Equifax Credit Freeze, P.O. Box 105788 Atlanta, GA 30348-5788

Experian Credit Freeze, P.O. Box 9554, Allen, TX 75013

TransUnion Credit Freeze, P.O. Box 160, Woodlyn, PA 19094

If any individuals had a username and password involved in this incident, it is recommended those individuals change the password and any security question or answer for those account(s) immediately. If individuals reuse usernames and passwords for other online accounts, it is recommended those individuals change the password and any security question or answer for those online accounts, as well.  Further, as a general precaution, individuals should never use the same password for more than one online account.  When creating passwords, they should be complex and not contain personal information.

Individuals may further educate themselves regarding identity theft, fraud alerts, credit freezes, and the steps they can take to protect their personal information by contacting the consumer reporting bureaus, the Federal Trade Commission, or their state Attorney General. The Federal Trade Commission may be reached at: 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20580; www.identitytheft.gov; 1-877-ID-THEFT (1-877-438-4338); and TTY: 1-866-653-4261.  The Federal Trade Commission also encourages those who discover that their information has been misused to file a complaint with them.  Individuals can obtain further information on how to file such a complaint by way of the contact information listed above.  Individuals have the right to file a police report if they ever experience identity theft or fraud.  Please note that in order to file a report with law enforcement for identity theft, individuals will likely need to provide some proof that they have been a victim.  Instances of known or suspected identity theft should also be reported to law enforcement and the state Attorney General.  This notice has not been delayed by law enforcement.

SOURCE Strategic Benefits Advisors, Inc.

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