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What You Need to Know About the Equifax Breach

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In the last few years, there's been an alarming amount and frequency of cyberattacks in the U.S., with breaches that seem to be widespread across a board of industries and targeted verticals. The recent Equifax Inc data breach in the United States has been identified as one of the most severe data breaches in the country's history of cyberattacks, confirmed by cybersecurity experts, the FBI and leading professionals in identity theft and fraud tracking.

Up to 143 million consumers' personal details were accessed by hackers between mid-May and July of 2017.The cybercriminals behind the breach set out to acquire sensitive data and successfully accessed names, driver's license numbers, Social Security numbers, and over 200,000 credit card numbers, with total headcount of individuals' whose data is at risk reaching nearly 50% of the U.S. population. The hack's reach extends to Canadian and UK residents whose information was also gained by the respective cybercriminals.

Various sources indicate that the motivation behind the data breach was the acquisition of sensitive data for phishing. Equifax stated that the vulnerability of an American website application was the cyber criminal's keyhole to successfully executing the attack.

Maxine Waters, House of Representatives Financial Services Committee member, indicated that she would revisit the matter of enhancing consumer protection solutions with legislation, with the objective to prevent and diminish the possible damage and impact of identity theft.

What measures will Equifax take in order to prevent a repeat of such a huge cyberattack? No concrete solutions or insights have been announced to the public. However, Equifax CEO and Chairman, Richard Smith has sworn to increase investing in cybersecurity protection solutions and resources.

Organizations like Equifax, can ensure that data is protected using methods and technologies that comply with the latest GDPR regulations. This is crucial to protecting sensitive data and the company’s brand reputation. ShieldQ is not only GDPR and PCI compliant, but has also acquired ISO 27001 certification to ensure the highest level of data protection.

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14 Sep 2017