Louisiana Cyberattack: Protecting Yourself from Scammers and Identity Theft

June 16, 2023

The cyberattack of Louisiana’s Office of Motor Vehicles has left citizens vulnerable to the risk of identity theft. The breach exposed sensitive information, including Social Security numbers and driver’s license numbers, which can be exploited by cybercriminals. In light of this incident, E. J. Ourso College of Business Associate Professor AJ Burns, one of the college’s cybersecurity experts, suggests the following tips to safeguard yourself from scammers and unauthorized access. 


Don’t Panic

Scammers will use this event to attempt to exploit and trick panicked consumers. Burns advises individuals to remain calm but vigilant. Be wary of any email, text, or call that claims to have your information or offers to protect you from this breach.  


Know the Difference

The nature of this breach sets it apart from other cyber incidents. Breaches like this are different because they include the types of information that enable identity theft (i.e., SSNs, driver’s license numbers). Identity theft is much more serious than losing your credit card information, for example, because it allows for credit creation. Recognize the distinction and be alert to signs of fraudulent activity. 


Adapt to this Environment

Breaches like this are inevitable. There’s nothing a consumer can do to stop it. You don’t really have a choice as to whether you get a driver’s license. You should add regular credit monitoring to your information hygiene routine. If you do not need to establish credit, consider freezing your credit with the major bureaus to block fraudulent credit requests. 


Lock it Up

Securing sensitive accounts is paramount in the face of cyber threats. Protect your sensitive accounts with multi-factor authentication, including your email accounts.  

In the aftermath of Louisiana’s OMV cyberattack, it is crucial to prioritize your digital security and follow the guidance provided by the Office of the Governor. In addition to the advice from Associate Professor Burns, it is essential to refer to the official directions outlined by the government to ensure comprehensive protection. Combining expert advice and official guidelines allows you to navigate this challenging situation with caution and resilience. Remember not to succumb to panic, differentiate the severity of the breach, adapt to the evolving cyber landscape, and fortify your accounts with multi-factor authentication. Take proactive steps to safeguard your personal information and stay vigilant against potential threats in alignment with the recommendations provided by the Office of the Governor.