Equifax data breach: Credit rating firm replaces staff

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Equifax data breach: Credit rating firm replaces staff

Equifax data breach: Credit rating firm replaces key staff

16 September 2017

In the Department Tech

A view of a sign for the company Equifax on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange in New York,, 12 SeptemberImage copyright

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Equifax’s share price has fallen by more than a third

After showing it had suffered a significant data breach last week, two personnel has been replaced by US credit report giant Equifax.

Data on lots of Canadians, roughly 400,000 Britons and around 143 million Americans may have been stolen by hackers involving July and mid-May.

The chief information officer and chief security officer have stood down.

Equifax faces dozens of claims over the breach, which the US Federal Trade Commission is currently investigating.

Addresses, birth dates, Social security numbers and driving licence numbers for up to 143 million Americans were exposed, the business says.

Credit card numbers for about 209,000 Americans and “certain dispute documents with personal identifying information” for some 182,000 Americans were also accessed by the hackers, it adds.

Lenders use data amassed by companies like Equifax to assess the credit worthiness of consumers seeking to acquire credit cards and houses, cars.

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‘How did you fail?’

Susan Mauldin retired and was replaced by Russ Ayres in an interim role, while Mark Rohrwasser in an interim capacity left and replaced chief information officer David Webb, the company said.

The changes, made as part of the firm’s review of the cyber security incident breach, were “effective immediately”, Equifax said in a announcement.

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The company added that its outside investigation was continuing and it had been working closely with the FBI in its probe.

Equifax holds data on more than 820 million consumers as well as information on 91 million companies.

Its share price has fallen by more than a third because it revealed the breach on 7 September, Reuters news agency reports.

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Senator Warren wants answers

US Senator Elizabeth Warren, who has built up a reputation as a consumer champion, is demanding to know the security systems of the firm failed.

“Equifax has failed to provide the necessary information describing exactly how this happened, and exactly how your security systems failed,” she said in a letter to the firm.

“Equifax’s initial efforts to provide customers information did nothing to explain the situation and actually appeared to be efforts to hoodwink them into waiving important legal rights.”

The credit score firm’s chief executive will testify at a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing in the US Congress on 3 October and has openly apologised for the breach.

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