With the Sunday deadline fast approaching to get a free year of identity theft protection and credit monitoring, millions of eligible South Carolina taxpayers still haven’t signed up.
The state is paying for the ProtectMyID service from Experian, at a cost of $12 million, in response to the 2012 scandal in which computer hackers broke into the S.C. Department of Revenue computers.
Personal financial data for 3.8 million individuals, 1.9 million dependents, and 699,000 businesses was compromised — data such as Social Security, bank account and credit card numbers.
The ProtectMyID service for individuals, Family Secure for dependents, and similar services for businesses are meant to provide some degree of protection against identity theft and misuse of personal data. For example, ProtectMyID alerts individuals when their credit report is accessed, because that’s an indication that a loan or new credit account is being opened in that person’s name.
So far, just 36 percent of eligible individuals have signed up — anyone who has filed a South Carolina tax return since 1998 is eligible — and just 40,000 dependents have been enrolled, out of 1.9 million whose data was compromised.
To sign up for ProtectMyID by March 31, individuals should visit protectmyid.com/scdor and use the activation code SCDOR123, or call toll-free 866-578-5422.
Business owners can sign up for free credit monitoring services through either Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. at dandb.com/sc or Experian’s Business Credit AdvantageSM at smartbusinessreports.com/SouthCarolina.
To enroll a minor dependent with “Family Secure,” an individual must already be enrolled in ProtectMyID.
Reach David Slade at 937-5552 or Twitter @DSladeNews.