Important Information Regarding the Equifax Breach
As you’ve likely heard, Equifax, one of four credit bureaus, announced a cybersecurity incident that compromised the personal information of an estimated 143 million consumers. Based on the company’s investigation, the unauthorized access occurred from mid-May through July 2017, and the information at risk included names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses and, in some instances, driver’s license numbers. Additionally, some credit card numbers and dispute documents were accessed.
To learn more, you can visit Equifax at www.equifaxsecurity2017.com . To learn if your personal information is at risk, visit https://www.equifaxsecurity2017.com/potential-impact/ If your name is on the list, Equifax is offering a one-year, complimentary subscription for U.S. consumers to an identity theft protection service.
If you are impacted, another option is to place a security freeze on your information by visiting all credit bureaus at their websites, or by calling their 800 numbers. This prohibits inquirers from accessing your full information without further authentication. Learn more at their sites.
Finally, BCU reminds all members to check your credit once a year at www.annualcreditreport.com to monitor your record. This includes pulling information on your children and/or elderly persons who are at particular risk since they are not active borrowers, and thereby may be unaware of fraudulent activities.
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Why Credit Unions Are Worth Celebrating
In 1924, Roy Bergengren, one of the architects of the credit union movement, reflected on what a credit union can do for people.
“The credit union is, in fact, a bridge,” Bergengren wrote in the inaugural issue of “The Bridge,” the official newsletter of the American credit union movement, which was then in its infancy. “It may be the bridge over which the tenant farmer travels the wide gap that separates him from ownership. It may be the way that opens the great land of opportunity to the wage worker, who finds his savings the ‘open sesame’ to broader possibilities for himself and his family.”
Twenty-four years later, in 1948, credit unions in America, and later around the world, began celebrating the philosophy and achievements of credit unions every year on the third Thursday in October. The theme for International Credit Union Day 2017 is “Dreams Thrive Here,” harkens back to Bergengren’s sentiment, and it’s meant to serve as a reminder of how effective credit unions like Brokaw Credit Union are at helping all people chase and achieve their biggest dreams in life.
This is because, unlike other financial institutions, credit unions are not-for-profit, so their primary purpose isn’t to score record profits in order to cut distant shareholders bigger dividends checks. Rather, the primary purpose of credit unions is—and always has been—to be of service to their members. That means you. This people-first philosophy doesn’t just mean better service, it translates into a better financial deal for consumers. Credit unions, on average, offer higher rates of return on savings accounts, lower rates on loans, and fewer and lower fees than other financial institutions.
Through the first half of 2016, according to data collected by the Credit Union National Association, credit union members saved $9.3 billion over what they would have paid at banks: $1.9 billion through higher yields on savings, $1.2 billion on lower fees, and $6.2 billion on lower loan rates.
So join us at any of our branches on Oct. 16 and enjoy cookies and a beverage as we celebrate ICU Day. It’s only appropriate we do this together!