Equifax to pay at least $575 million as part of FTC settlement

Credit monitoring firm Equifax reached an agreement with the United States authorities to pay them 575 million dollars for the cyber attack that they suffered in 2017 and that exposed the personal information of 147 million people.

The agreement, which was achieved outside the courts, involved the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the Office for Consumer Financial Protection and 50 states in the country, includes a compensation fund of 425 million that could reach 700 million and that will be used to help affected consumers .

“Under a resolution agreement presented today, the company has accepted payment of up to 425 million dollars to help people affected by the data security incident,” the FTC said on its website .

Equifax will also pay 175 million to 48 states in the United States, plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and 100 million to the Office for Consumer Financial Protection for administrative fines.

If approved, this treaty could become the largest that a company has paid for a leak of information and would end the investigations and class action lawsuits that were initiated when the company revealed in 2017 that it had suffered a cyber attack

The FTC lawsuit, which was held in a court in Atlanta, Georgia, said the company had not been able to “protect a huge amount” of personal information that was stored on its network, which caused a breach. which exposed the names, physical addresses and social security numbers of millions of customers .

If you are one of those affected or suspect that you may be, you can find the information you need on the Federal Trade Commission’s website . You can also subscribe to an email to receive updates.

Equifax will offer free credit monitoring or a cash payment of up to $ 125; compensation and cash payments for the time spent dealing with the incident, to cover expenses you have had. Likewise, the company will help free of charge in the identity recovery process for up to seven years.

The president of the FTC, Joe Simons, said in the statement that the agreement “requires the company to take measures to improve the security of their data from now on, and will ensure that consumers harmed by this incident (… ) receive help to protect against identity theft and fraud.”

Days after the news of the leak was known, Equifax shares fell by 30%, but at the moment they have already reached the rates they previously had. In the first half of 2019, the company said it had recorded a accrual of 690 million, which it expects to expand by 11 million in the second quarter.

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