That's about 44 percent of the USA population.
Equifax has been lobbying lawmakers and regulators on issues regarding "data security and breach notification" and "cybersecurity threat information sharing". So if you want to apply for something, you need to lift the freeze a few days beforehand. You people have all of this yaddy, yaddy, I need to get straight to the website or whatever I need.
As the magnitude of the Equifax hack sinks in, more people are realizing they've been victimized and cyber security specialists are being inundated with calls and questions about what to do next. It is also offering free credit monitoring and identity theft protection for a year.
Originally there was speculation that enrollment would've prevented you from suing the company or joining a class action lawsuit related to the credit breach.
Fraud Protection expert Dwayne Melancon is the VP of Product at iovation.
Krebs said it's also a good idea to ask for fraud alerts from ChexSystems, which monitors applications for new checking and savings accounts, and to opt out of pre-approved credit offers through optoutprescreen.com.
In addition to seeking a credit freeze, potential victims of the Equifax hack should regularly request a copy of their credit reports and sign up for free credit monitoring with a verified provider, Krebs said. So you can either go to each of the three credit bureaus individually, or you can go to a aggregator.
Indeed, in that worst case scenario, we may be forced as a society to rethink how we confirm identity and track credit ratings, which would be a major disruption for the financial services industry. "They'll work with all three credit bureaus and freeze your credit".
A freeze on an individual's credit files ensures that identity thieves will not be able to use that person's personal information to obtain loans or lines of credit. Melancon says keep an eye on your statements, too.
Equifax will not be contacting everyone who was affected, but will send direct mail notices to those whose credit card numbers or dispute records were accessed. These companies play a huge role in our lives, but they simply aren't accountable, and are often unavailable, to consumers at all.
You may have never used Equifax yourself - or even heard of it - but the credit reporting agency could still have a treasure trove of your personal information. By the time you file your legitimate return, the IRS will inform you that someone else has already filed a tax return in your name. For example, if it turns out that the data was taken by a foreign spy service, for example, that might suggest that the hackers intend to use it to build a database of Americans they can use for espionage (for example, by figuring out who can be targeted for compromise by financial incentives or by blackmail).
Cocanower says we all know about putting malware software on our computers, but we don't think about it for our phones. "Most US states have breach reporting requirements which means that at least the general counsel or the executive leadership would have to be informed and aware".