Millions of Americans Affected By Massive Equifax Data Breach

Posted September 16, 2017

Equifax is under scrutiny after last week it was revealed that their database had been breached, exposing the personal information of 143 million Americans to hackers.

"My office has been in contact with Equifax and is working to get to the bottom of how this massive data breach occurred, and how we can protect the 12 million Texans it reported who are at potential risk of identity theft", Attorney General Paxton said.

Victims whose Social Security numbers, birth dates and driver's license numbers are now exposed could be victims of identity theft.

A credit freeze, which is also called a security freeze, locks down your credit and can only be lifted with a personal identification number (PIN) that you receive when you enroll.

Equifax is offering a free check up on its website to see if your personal information has been compromised.

"We're taking the unprecedented step of offering every USA consumer in the country a comprehensive package of identity theft protection and credit file monitoring at no cost", said Smith.

Social insecurity: You and me and the Equifax breach

It confirms suspicisions that an Apache Strust 2 vulnerability was used to attack Equifax, in one of the world's largest data breaches.

Mainers can call Equifax at 800-349-9960 to freeze your credit report, Leach said. "As we always tell consumers, vigilance is your best friend in these situations", said Attorney General Coffman. A freeze restricts access to your credit report, making it almost impossible for someone to open a new account or line of credit in your name. Such action makes it more hard for someone to open a new account in your name.

If the message saying your information has been compromised comes up, what do you do?

Equifax Canada's website says that "only a limited number of Canadians may have been affected" and "the breach is contained".

Experts said if you have been impacted by identity theft, you need to close any accounts that have been tampered with immediately. Credit bureau staff will review your report with you. "Just pay attention, really that's the most important thing", said Dr. McGill. With their product, you control and protect your identity. They can also consider putting a credit freeze or fraud alert on their files, and file taxes early.

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