WASHINGTON (AP/WRIC) — Equifax will pay up to $700 million to settle with the Federal Trade Commission and others over a 2017 data breach that exposed Social Security numbers and other private information of nearly 150 million people.
The proposed settlement with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, if approved by the federal district court Northern District of Georgia, will provide up to $425 million in monetary relief to consumers, a $100 million civil money penalty, and other relief. The bureau coordinated its investigation with the Federal Trade Commission and attorneys general from across the U.S.
Virginia will receive $4.3 million as its share of the multistate bipartisan settlement.
“More than 4 million Virginians had their personal information compromised by Equifax’s negligence and failure to implement adequate security programs,” Attorney General Mark R. Herring said. “I hope this settlement sends a message to companies nationwide that my colleagues and I will not tolerate their failure to keep consumers information protected and private. While this settlement puts Virginians who have been affected by the data breach one step closer to being made whole, consumers need to remain vigilant regarding their data, including monitoring their credit card and bank statements as well as credit reports.”
Consumers who are eligible for redress will be required to submit claims online or by mail. Paper claims forms can also be requested over the phone. Consumers will be able to obtain information about the settlement, check their eligibility to file a claim, and file a claim on the Equifax Settlement Breach online registry. To receive email updates regarding the launch of this online registry, consumers can sign up here. Consumers can also call the settlement administrator at 1-833-759-2982 for more information.
The announcement Monday confirms a report by The Wall Street Journal that the credit reporting agency had reached a deal with the U.S.