Here are two credit union resources to learn and take action about this serious problem.
Data breach call to action from CUNA Mutual
Send a message to Congress. We need to seize lawmakers’ attention so they turn to holding merchants accountable for their data breaches. StopTheDataBreaches is where everyone – can visit, learn more and participate in this significant grassroots effort.
GREAT – GrassRoots Education & Action Team for MN Credit Unions
Merchants are not subject to the same federal data protection standards as financial institutions, such as credit unions. This means it’s easier for hackers to gain access to a person’s credit card number, debit PIN number, or other sensitive data through a merchant. Hackers can then sell this information to bad actors, or use it themselves to fraudulently buy things with the stolen data
The Identity Theft Resource Center estimates that more than 500 data breaches have occurred this year, exposing more than 75 million data records. According to data from the Credit Union National Association, the Target breach alone resulted in credit unions reissuing approximately 4.6 million credit and debit cards at a cost of $30.6 million.
When a data breach occurs, the merchants pay NONE of the costs to send individuals their new cards or the fraudulent charges an individual may have on their cards or accounts. In fact, the merchants are not required to pay ANY costs incurred from their own data breaches. Who does pay all the costs from these breaches? Your credit union-and ultimately, credit union members like you.
Credit unions clean up the mess the merchants caused when a data breach occurs by informing credit union members and reissuing them new credit and debit cards if required. In addition, credit unions pursue criminals through available legal channels on behalf of their members, saving them time and legal expenses.
This is not fair and it’s time for credit union members to take a stand!
Each year Minnesota credit unions save members millions of dollars in the form of fewer fees, lower rates on loans and higher returns on savings. However, ensuring that credit unions are able to continue to offer these savings, requires action at the state and federal capitols.
The “new economy” has created unique challenges and opportunities for credit unions and crucial industry issues will be decided in the next year. There has never been a more important time for credit unions to be able to voice their opinions to elected leaders than now. Credit union’s ability to support the expansion of Member Business Lending or defeat bank attacks on the credit union tax exemption are directly linked to our communications with elected officials.
You can join credit union individuals around the state and nation in making a difference at the state’s and nation’s capitols. All you have to do is join GREAT, the Minnesota Credit Union Network’s GrassRoots Education & Action Team. Through membership in GREAT you help to preserve, protect and promote Minnesota’s credit unions.
Joining GREAT is free and vital to protecting credit union interests in good times as well as challenging ones. To sign up, simply visit the GREAT web site at www.greatcreditunions.org and enter your email and zip code in the quick sign up section. Be sure you enter your home address so that we can match you with your legislator.
With your help, Minnesota’s credit unions can help secure their ability to continue providing products and services that put people before profit.