Are you affected by the Equifax breach?

AG Eric Schneiderman says over 8 million New Yorkers may have been affected by the breach, which lasted from mid-May through July.

Credit card numbers for over 200,000 consumers were stolen, as well as over 150,000 documents used by customers in disputes.

Hackers hit Equifax, a credit reporting agency that rates and tracks the financial history of consumers.

Equifax tracks everything from your payments on student loans to mortgages and gets their information from credit card companies, lenders, and banks. The security breach, which was discovered on July 29, may have given cyber criminals access to sensitive personal information.

Smith, the company's chief executive, said in a statement, "This is clearly a disappointing event for our company, and one that strikes at the heart of who we are and what we do".

"I apologize to every affected consumer", he said.

Thursday, Equifax announced hackers infiltrated their data base gaining access to personal information including names, addresses, and social security numbers. Those affected by the Equifax hack is no less than 143 million, which is nearly one-half of the entire population.

He considered the breach "gigantic", made worse by the fact that Equifax stores extensive personal information about people and keeps it up to date.

So far, two class action lawsuits against Equifax have been proposed, alleging that the credit monitoring company was negligent in protecting its customers' private information and should have spent more money protecting the data against cyberattacks.

Security experts have noted that Equifax appears to rely on a mix of older and potentially vulnerable software for its website, including the Apache Struts web application framework. Forbes reported that, according to a cybersecurity engineer for Equifax, the company was using "decade-old" security software on its infrastructure.

Consider freezing your credit reports. Equifax is providing free service for one year through TrustedID Premier. Ars Technica has a list of other steps one can take to protect their identity, as well.

  • Carolyn Briggs