Equifax hacked, millions of customers' details breached

Monday, September 11th 2017

Equifax, the consumer credit reporting agency, has been badly hit by hackers. The cyber-breach has resulted in a huge leak of names, birth dates, addresses and social security numbers which are among the details stolen. It is feared that up to 44 million British consumers are affected and an investigation is underway on Friday into the massive cyber-attack. The US credit rating company on Thursday confirmed the hack in a statement it issued. The company said hackers broke into its network sometime in May and had remained there till discovered in late July. Although how many people in UK and Canada are affected is not known, roughly 143 million consumers in the US were affected, it is estimated. The information commission is investigating how UK customers are affected, many of whom are not aware their data is with Equifax.

The company said the core consumer or commercial credit reporting databases were unaffected, however birth dates, addresses, social security numbers and, in some cases, driver's license numbers were breached. Nevertheless, approximately 209,000 US consumers had their credit card numbers stolen and certain documents of nearly 182,000 US consumers, holding personal identity information were breached. The company was quick to respond and apologise. It has suggested a remedy offering a year's worth of free identity monitoring for all those US citizens applicable.

The Chairman and CEO of the firm, Richard F. Smith, said the event is clearly disappointing and strikes at the heart of who they are and what they do. He apologised to their business customers and consumers for the frustration and concern it has caused. The media has dubbed the event as one of the most brutal cyber attacks in history, as it is very possibly the worst breach of personal info ever.

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