SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Continuing her efforts to protect consumers’ personal information, state Rep. Natalie Manley, D-Joliet, supported a new law that will allow Illinois residents to freeze their credit at no charge.
“Last year, over 40 percent of Illinois residents were impacted by the data breach at Equifax, and, this year, we continue to learn about more companies that have failed to protect consumers’ financial and personal information, including Panera, Whole Foods and Delta Airlines,” Manley said. “People provide these companies with highly sensitive information, but their data is not being secured, increasing the risk that their identity will be compromised. This new law will make it easier and less expensive for consumers to secure their personal information.”
Whenever a data breach occurs, consumers have to work quickly to secure their personal information, bank accounts and credit information by freezing their credit. Last year alone, over 5.4 million people in Illinois had their personal information stolen when hackers got past security measures at the reporting agency Equifax. In response, Manley supported House Bill 4095, which was recently signed into law, to prevent credit agencies from charging a fee for freezing their credit. Additionally, the new law allows consumers to freeze their credit online as well as by mail.
“People have to be constantly vigilant in order to make sure their personal identity and information is not used by anyone else,” Manley said. “We have the responsibility to make sure that consumers have easy access to the tools needed to protect themselves and their families from data breaches.”