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The FBI has detained a suspect they believe may be repsonsible for the Capital One data breach which impacted over 106m customer accounts and credit card applications between March and July 2019.

The suspect, 33 year old Paige Adele Thompson, was found after posting a series of incriminating messages to social media accounts such as GitHub and Twitter. An anonymous tip was emailed to Capital One on July 17th alerting them to the post.

Ms Thompson is a software engineer living in Seattle, Washington. Her profiles state that she currently works at Netcrave Communications as owner and CTO of the company. In 2015 to 2016 she worked as a systems engineer for Amazon Web Services, the cloud computing company for Capital One.

On July 29th, the FBI raided Ms Thompson’s home and seized a number of digital devices. Files related to Capital One and Amazon Web Services were found on the devices. If convicted, Thompson faces up to 5 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Are you a Capital One customer? 

If you are a Capital One customer there are measures you can take to protect yourself. We recommend performing all of the following steps to safeguard yourself from damage associated with the hack.

1. Review credit card and banking statements and report suspicious activity to the bank immediately.

2. Freeze your credit so no one can access your credit reports without express permission. This keeps criminals from taking out loans in your name. You can freeze your credit through one of the three main credit bureaus online: Experian, Equifax and TransUnion.

Note: if you are going to make a major purchase that requires a credit check, you will need to unfreeze your credit a few days in advance of your purchase. 

3. Sign up for a credit monitoring service and monitor your credit reports closely. Alternatively, sign up for notifications about account activity from your bank and other service providers.

4. Do not respond to calls or emails from creditors. Instead, find their phone number on the legitimate website beginning with an “https://” and reach out to them directly.

Lessons To Be Learned

The Capital One breach highlights the importance of robust cyber security measures for businesses that handle sensitive client data. All businessowners would do well to review their existing cyber secuirty protocols and assess where improvements should be made. A professional IT managed service provider like Performance Connectivity, Inc. will perform free cyber security assessments that reveal vulnerabilities within your business network and recommend solutions based on their findings.

To schedule a FREE cyber security assessment for your business, call 914-934-9775 or email info@p-connect.com.