September 3, 2020
Subject: Notice of a Data Security Incident
Texell Credit Union (“Texell”) has become aware of a data security incident that may have impacted personal information belonging to certain clients and employees. On September 3, 2020, Texell notified potentially impacted individuals of this incident by letter and provided resources to assist them. The letters include information about this incident and about steps that potentially impacted individuals can take to monitor and help protect their information.
On May 14, 2020, Texell discovered suspicious activity involving an employee’s email account. In response to this discovery, we immediately changed the password for the employee’s email account and began an investigation to determine what happened and whether information may have been accessed. On May 18, 2020, the investigation confirmed that an unauthorized individual had accessed one employee’s email account but could not confirm whether personal information was accessed. Texell then engaged a data mining firm to conduct an extensive review of the contents of the impacted email account, and on July 7, 2020, we confirmed that the personal information of some of our members was contained in the email account that was accessed by the unauthorized individual.
Based upon our investigation, the affected personal information may have included names, addresses, Social Security numbers, and account numbers. Texell then worked diligently to identify contact information for all potentially affected individuals in order to provide them with notice of the incident. Texell is unaware of any evidence that anyone’s information has been misused as a result of this incident.
Texell has established a toll-free call center to answer questions about the incident and related concerns. The call center is available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Central Time and can be reached at (833) 755-1018. In addition, out of an abundance of caution, Texell is offering credit monitoring and identity protection services through ID Experts to potentially impacted individuals at no cost.
The privacy and protection of private information is a top priority for Texell, and we deeply regret any inconvenience or concern this incident may cause.
While we are unaware of the misuse of any client’s information, we are providing the following information to help those wanting to know more about steps they can take to protect themselves:
What steps can I take to protect my personal information?
• If you detect any suspicious activity on any of your accounts, you should promptly notify the financial institution or company with which the account is maintained. You should also promptly report any fraudulent activity or any suspected incidents of identity theft to proper law enforcement authorities.
• Obtain a copy of your credit report, free of charge, directly from each of the three nationwide credit reporting agencies. To do so, free of charge once every 12 months, please visit www.annualcreditreport.com or call toll free at 1-877-322-8228. Contact information for the three nationwide credit reporting agencies is listed at the bottom of this page.
• Please notify your financial institution immediately of any unauthorized transactions made or new accounts opened in your name.
• You can take steps recommended by the Federal Trade Commission to protect yourself from identify theft. The FTC’s website offers helpful information at www.ftc.gov/idtheft.
• Additional information on what you can do to better protect yourself is included in your notification letter.
How do I obtain a copy of my credit report?
You can obtain a copy of your credit report, free of charge, directly from each of the three nationwide credit reporting agencies. To order your credit report, free of charge once every 12 months, please visit www.annualcreditreport.com or call toll free at 1-877-322-8228. Contact information for the three nationwide credit reporting agencies is included in the letter, and is also listed here:
How do I put a fraud alert on my account?
You may consider placing a fraud alert on your credit report. This fraud alert statement informs creditors to possible fraudulent activity within your report and requests that your creditor contact you prior to establishing any accounts in your name. To place a fraud alert on your credit report, contact Equifax, Experian or TransUnion and follow the Fraud Victims instructions. To place a fraud alert on your credit accounts, contact your financial institution or credit provider. Contact information for the three nationwide credit reporting agencies is included in the letter and is also listed at the bottom of this page.
How do I put a security freeze on my credit reports?
You also have the right to place a security freeze on your credit report. A security freeze is intended to prevent credit, loans and services from being approved in your name without your consent. To place a security freeze on your credit report, you need to make a request to each consumer reporting agency. You may make that request by certified mail, overnight mail, or regular stamped mail, or by following the instructions found at the websites listed below. The following information must be included when requesting a security freeze (note that if you are making a request for your spouse, this information must be provided for him/her as well): (1) full name, with middle initial and any suffixes; (2) Social Security number; (3) date of birth; (4) current address and any previous addresses for the past five years; and (5) any applicable incident report or complaint with a law enforcement agency or the Registry of Motor Vehicles. The request must also include a copy of a government-issued identification card and a copy of a recent utility bill or bank or insurance statement. It is essential that each copy be legible, display your name and current mailing address, and the date of issue. The consumer reporting agency may charge a small fee to place, lift, or remove a freeze, but is free if you are a victim of identity theft or the spouse of a victim of identity theft, and you submit a valid police report relating to the identity theft incident to the consumer reporting agency. You may obtain a security freeze by contacting any one or more of the following national consumer reporting agencies:
Contact information for the three nationwide credit reporting agencies is as follows:
Additional Free Resources: You can obtain information from the consumer reporting agencies, the FTC or from your respective state Attorney General about steps you can take toward preventing identity theft. You may report suspected identity theft to local law enforcement, including to the FTC or to the Attorney General in your state.
Federal Trade Commission
600 Pennsylvania Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20580
You also have certain rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), including: to know what is in your file; to dispute incomplete or inaccurate information; to have consumer reporting agencies correct or delete inaccurate, incomplete, or unverifiable information, as well as others. For more information about the FCRA, and your rights pursuant to the FCRA, please visit http://files.consumerfinance.gov/f/201504_cfpb_summary_your-rights-under-fcra.pdf.