One of South Africa's largest credit bureaux, TransUnion, has issued a statement and sent an e-mail to some of its customers saying that "Your information is safe with us." This follows last week's large data leak in South Africa which saw 60,323,827 unique personal records with identity numbers leaked publicly on the Internet.

As part of helping consumers, TransUnion has announced it is offering a solution for consumers that will alert them as soon as there is an unauthorised change or discrepancy on a consumerโ€™s credit record.

โ€œWe are offering a complimentary Alerts service as we understand that people are concerned about identity theft and protecting their credit profile. The Alerts may show possible irregular use of your information, which can indicate that your personal information is being used fraudulently to access credit,โ€ said Lee Naik, CEO at TransUnion Africa.

Those interested in the free service can register online on TranUnion's website or via TransUnionโ€™s call centre on +27 0861 482 482.

In a statement, Naik also explained that identity theft can play out in a number of different ways and that a common modus operandi is for thieves to use the victimโ€™s identity to purchase products and services on credit.

"The victims often then only find out months later once their account is far in arrears and other credit accounts have been opened in their name," said Naik.

The alert service will be free for the first three months after registration to consumers and according to the credit bureau, the aim is to encourage all South Africans to take a more proactive role in securing their personal data.

โ€œThe Alerts service can help consumers detect identity theft earlier on, and in doing so allow them to minimise the impact of the breach. In instances such as this, knowledge truly is power and we encourage all consumers to register for the Alerts service,โ€ concluded Naik.


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