In wake of OPM breach, few sign up for protection services

Meredith Somers reports:

Federal employees don’t think their personally identifiable information (PII) is safer than it was one year ago, but new numbers from the Office of Personnel Management show those employees are not taking advantage of the free protection offered in the wake of the massive cyber breach.

About 21.5 million current and former federal employees and some of their family members were victims of the two OPM data breaches last year. Of that group, only 11.36 percent — or 2.7 million people — have enrolled in free identity protection services provided by ID Experts, according to the latest data from the agency.

An exclusive Federal News Radio survey found that about 55 percent of federal workers and government contractors thought their PII was not safer than it was a year ago when the breaches were announced.

Read more on Federal News Radio.

I’m not sure that failure to sign up for the identity protection services indicates little interest in protecting the information. Some of the 21.5 million may already have such services as a result of other breaches, and some may have just put security freezes on their credit reports.

It will be interesting to see what happens to the sign-up rate once OPM issues its revised offering that will provide protection services for 10 years instead of the three currently offered.

About the author: Dissent

9 comments to “In wake of OPM breach, few sign up for protection services”

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  1. Anonymous - June 8, 2016

    Its the same way in rebates. The corporations or government know many will not take advantage of the situation at hand. Some of these free credit services do not cover the entire cost of what should be covered, and many probably feel when the coverage ends, that they will be coerced into signing up for services that basically do nothing, other than alert you to something after the fact.

    Like Brian Krebs says, its simply better to watch the credit report yourself, then if something happens, file a police report and follow that action with doing a credit freeze.

    • Dissent - June 8, 2016

      I just went straight to a security freeze and didn’t wait. Unless you plan on needing credit report checks a lot, it’s the quickest way to get some protection, and is usually free to do if you’ve been notified your data were in a breach. The freeze can be lifted with your authorization for a one-time check if you need to allow access.

      • Anonymous - June 13, 2016

        I simply have a credit card with a high limit. It closes the need for most credit checks. The only two then that might be needed is a home loan or new car.

        Most of USA is clueless to the technology thats out there to protect them. Its difficult for a government to push the credit freeze idea, since it may lower the amount of spending consumers would do, which hurts the bottom line.

      • Anonymous - June 14, 2016

        Great advice. I wish I had read this a couple of weeks ago. I signed up for the CSID monitoring as well as already using a separate service. In my naivete, I thought I was protected. The last two weeks has been hellish trying to deal with my identity being stolen.
        I’ve have a couple of fraud reps at various banks tell me they are seeing increased activity lately. They ave no way of knowing, but they left me with the impression mine stems from the OPM breach. Almost like they’ve been laying low for a while and now they are ready to capitalize.

        • Dissent - June 14, 2016

          You can still do a security freeze. Talk to your bank to get their advice. If you don’t plan on opening any new accts soon where they might need to run a credit check, it might give you a bit of additional protection and peace of mind…?

  2. Michael Holt - June 10, 2016

    I am a former 29 year Federal IT Computer Specialist Cybersecurity Whistleblower who discovered the huge backdoor access or vulnerability thats exsisted since MS Win 95 still used in every “cybersecurity breach”. Proven while going through the Merit Systems Protection Board federal court process (Honorable Judge Amy V. Dunning)
    In federal court the government lied and stated “Google, Microsoft and other reputable vendors don’t collect users information. Only Hackers do without their customers knowledge. Needless to say “they were wrong”. My initial 2006 huge global cybersecurity vulnerability discovery wasn’t suppose to be discovered.
    The US and alliances Five, Nine, Fourteen Eyes have exploited the Microsoft cybersecurity flaw for years. My Merit Systems Protection case proves the United States government allowed the Office of Personnel Breach to Hack their employees files.
    Who really believes any of the “so called Hacking is occurring? If you do, please read NSA Prism, Xkeyscore. Also GCHQ upstream programs

    Please also look up Linkedin profile, Michael L. Holt. Federal IT Computer Specialist Cybersecurity Whistleblower. 300 post on Cybersecurity truth and lies by world leaders.

    • Dissent - June 11, 2016

      Thanks so much for your comment. I definitely need to read more about what you found and wrote, etc.

      • Anonymous - June 13, 2016

        I venture to guess it is the same for funds that are being siphoned. Its not a cyber crime wave, or internet mofia. Its other countries getting in and staking claim to US funds to keep afloat. If the US vault door could be closed on China, Russia and others – even for a year – I bet their debt ratio would go through the roof.

    • Dissent - June 13, 2016

      I did some browsing, but feel like I’m walking in in the middle of this. Is there one document online that gives the full story from start to current that I could read?

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