December 16 2017

CPD urges credit protection in response to Equifax breach

December 16 2017, 03:02 | Geraldine Moore

FAQ on Equifax data breach -- What you should do now: Money Matters

What's The Difference Between Equifax, TransUnion And Experian?

You should also enroll in fraud alerts with your bank or credit card company and you may consider putting a credit freeze in place.

About 143 million Americans were affected by this breach-That's almost half the USA population.

Although Equifax is waiving its fee for credit freezes until November 21, it usually costs to place a freeze, unless you are already a victim of identity theft.

"We are sorry to hear news that Equifax suffered from a security breach and information disclosure incident that was potentially carried out by exploiting a vulnerability in the Apache Struts Web Framework", wrote René Gielen, vice president of Apache Struts, in a statement issued Saturday.

The FTC would be in charge of enforcement.

The Federal Trade Commission on Thursday said that it was investigating the data breach at Equifax Inc. that left highly sensitive personal information for 143 million consumers vulnerable.

The breach, which unmasked the names and social security numbers of customers, has reportedly affected more than 140 million Americans.

"If Equifax can't commit to them, their leadership is not up to the job and the entire leadership must be replaced", he said.

But what if you never had an account with Equifax?

-Check the Equifax website under "Potential Impact" to see if you've been compromised. Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., noted in his letter to the House Judiciary Committee that it was "disturbing" that Equifax took six weeks to inform users that their data had been breached. If so, as the company reported last week, your social security number and other identifying information have been stolen. I'll have to gather a copy of my driver's license and a copy of a utility bill or bank statement before sending that package of personal information off to the company.

Equifax is offering one year of free credit monitoring and identity theft protection services to all consumers, regardless of whether or not your information was involved in the breach. In the last several days, Equifax has removed arbitration-related language from its terms of use.

You can temporarily lift the freeze for a creditor if you know which reporting agency they're using. The Attorney General's Office is actively working with multiple state Attorneys General to gather additional information from Equifax. The company was scheduled to meet with investors publicly this week at a financial conference in NY, but pulled out and instead executives are giving one-on-one meetings with investors, a spokeswoman said.

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