Equifax to pay USD700 million in breach settlement

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – The Wall Street Journal said Equifax will pay around USD700 million to settle with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over a 2017 data breach that exposed Social Security numbers and other private information of nearly 150 million people.

The Journal, citing unnamed sources familiar with the matter, said the settlement could be announced as soon as tomorrow. Equifax declined to comment.

The report said the deal would resolve investigations by the FTC, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and most state attorneys general. It would also resolve a nationwide consumer class-action lawsuit.

Spokesmen for the FTC and the CFPB didn’t immediately return messages seeking comment on Friday night.

The breach was one of the largest affecting people’s private information. Atlanta-based Equifax did not notice the attack for more than six weeks. The compromised data included Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, driver licence numbers and credit card numbers.

The company said earlier this year that it had set aside around USD700 million to cover anticipated settlements and fines.

The corporate headquarters of Equifax Inc in Atlanta. – AP