Ever Wonder What Happened to Equifax and their Big Breach?

Equifax will be required to pay at least $575 million for a security breach that took place in 2017. The breach was the largest hack in US history, exposing sensitive information of 150 million people. The information compromised included names, Social Security numbers, drivers’ license numbers, and addresses.

The settlement includes $300 million for effected consumers who purchased credit monitoring services after the announcement of the breach. That number could grow to $425 million if claims exceed the initial $300 million. Equifax also agreed to pay $175 million to states and $100 million to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in penalties.

Those consumers affected by the data breach will be eligible for free credit monitoring, and those who have already paid for credit monitoring will be eligible for a $125 cash payment.

Equifax will also be required to provide all US consumers with six free credit reports per year for seven years. This is an increase from the usual two reports per year that all credit agencies are currently required to provide free of charge.

Equifax was aware of the security flaw in their website a full two months before hackers used it to find customers’ personal information. Additionally, after the breach occurred, Equifax waited three months to notify consumers. These two major mishandlings of the security of their data prompted the resignation of CEO Richard Smith.

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Posted by Charles Wright