Maine CU League, CUs Take On Role Of Helping Consumers Protect Themselves In Light Of Latest Merchant Data Breach

September 5, 2014

Swiping credit cards is something many people do on a daily basis with little thought for the security of their information.  The Home Depot is the latest company to announce a possible security breach in a string of breaches that started with Target in November 2013.  Home Depot is at least the fourth merchant with locations in Maine to announce a possible breach in the past week.  Others include Otto's Pizza, Shaw's Supermarkets and Dairy Queen.

"Security breaches happen daily," according to Rebekah Higgins, Assistant Vice President of Card Services for the Maine Credit Union League, adding, "You're going about your business and thinking that everything is OK, and you know you're trying to use your card and it's declined."

The League and Maine's credit unions are again helping to inform consumers and provide as much information about protecting themselves whenever a breach is suspected, despite the fact that credit unions (or financial institutions) did not cause any of these breaches.  "It's all about protecting members and getting the word out is an important piece of doing so, as well as offering tips on what they can do to protect themselves in these situations," stated Higgins.

Many places use technology to detect fraud, but Higgins said it can still be a scary situation.  "The one thing that I always tell people is to just keep a close eye on your account.  Check your statements and accounts regularly and report any suspicious activity right away.  Financial institutions, especially credit unions, will work with consumers to help in any way," she said.