Unfortunately for Equifax, outcry over their massive security breach is not yesterday’s news even 6 weeks after the hack was made public. In fact, there is a deeper probe being made by government officials and consumers trying to figure out what can be done to prevent another breach and how personal information can be protected.
Here are some of the most recent updates on the breach:
- Equifax announced that they believe 2.5 million more U.S. consumers may have had their data stolen. Adding to the original prediction of 143 million, it’s now believed that approximately 145.5 million consumers may be affected.
- 209,000 consumer credit card numbers were stolen.
- 182,000 documents with personal information were stolen.
- Former Equifax CEO, Richard Smith, reported that the hack happened due to a human error in their security department who failed to patch a flaw in the system.
- Close to 11 million driver’s license ID numbers are believed to have been compromised.
- It was discovered that some coding on Equifax’s website contained malicious content. The security analyst who discovered the issue was trying to download his credit report when he was confronted with this malicious link. Equifax released a statement saying this was not another hack and the third-party coding had been removed.
- Democrats have introduced a new bill that would stop the credit reporting agencies from charging fees to consumers for security protection options to prevent ID Theft.
- Democrats have also called for Equifax to wave their fee for business credit reports since it’s believed that business credit data was compromised as well. Companies are at risk of business identity theft as well as personal.
- A Republican lawmaker introduced a new bill to give U.S. bank regulators more power over supervising the credit reporting agencies.
- Equifax has been doused with dozens of class-action lawsuits.
- The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) have ongoing federal investigations into any misconduct.
Whether your information is listed as compromised or not, the fact that a multi-billion-dollar worldwide corporation would be so sloppy in the protection of consumer data is worrisome, to say the least.
Whether we like it or not, the credit bureaus own our information, we did not give them permission but are required to trust them with the data. Identity protection is in your hands, we cannot trust corporations in this digital age to be able to ward off all potential threats. Even if they do have the most cutting-edge protection, thieves will find any weakness in the system and break through it. The best thing each consumer can do is monitor their credit, know the signs of a scam, and keep their personal data secure.
Here’s some of the information that Equifax handed to hackers:
- Email addresses
- Social security numbers
- Credit card and bank information
- Birth dates
- Driver’s license ID numbers
- Income / job history
- Business information
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