If you were among the 147 million people whose data was exposed in 201
The breach resulted in hackers stealing social security numbers, addresses, credit card and driver card information, date of birth and other personal information stored on Equifax's servers. As part of the investigation, the FTC claimed that the free credit institution failed to take reasonable steps to secure the network.
To get started you can check if you and your information were exposed as part of the breach. If your data was exposed, you collect receipts and other documents related to the hacking that show non-pocket losses and expenses. And finally, enter your claim for compensation. You have until January 22, 2020 to register as part of the class action settlement.
Even if you were not part of the breach and do not qualify for filing, you can get free credit reports for seven years as part of the settlement.
Participating in the Equifax settlement is not entirely straightforward. The exact amount that Equifax will pay out is not determined. The proposed settlement will start with a $ 300 million fund to offset affected consumers who purchased credit monitoring services. Equifax will also pay $ 175 million to state and districts – and $ 100 million to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in civil penalties.
If the original $ 300 million infusion does not adequately compensate consumers, Equifax, according to the FTC, has agreed to kick in $ 125 million more to the fund for a total $ 700 million payout. If you are a claimant, your part of the settlement may include free credit monitoring services and protection against identity theft. You may also be eligible for cash payments to cover expenses as a result of the breach – such as a lawyer's fee and credit monitoring – free help to recover from identity theft and free credit reports for 10 years.
How to participate in the settlement.
Find out if you were hit by the breach
To check if your data was exposed, the FTC and the official settlement site have an online tool you can use to check if you were part of the Equifax breach.
You must provide the last name and the last six digits of your social security number to see if your data was part of the hacking.
Prepare and Submit Your Claim
On the Equifax Data Breach Settlement site, you can now file a claim to get back the money you lost or used as a result of the extensive hack. How to prepare and then submit a claim.
- To support your claim, you must collect all the documents and receipts you have related to the breach to show the expenses you have to recover for identity theft, for example, and money lost due to the breach.
- To follow the settlement, the FTC suggests that you sign up to receive email updates.
- You can also check the FTC's Equifax Data Breach Settlement page and the official data breach settlement settlement page.
- And the FTC has a number you can call – (833) 759-2982 – for updates.
- At the official settlement site, you file a claim online.
- You can also follow the instructions on the site to email your claim or have a claim form sent to you.
- As part of the claim process, choose which benefits you qualify for and consider which documents you need to submit to support your claim. Supporting documents include statements showing unauthorized costs, costs for freezing your account, fees paid to professionals to help with theft and other related expenses.
What the settlement payments can cover
The proposed agreement provides payments of $ 20,000 per person to cover what you used to get after the break. Here are the costs and expenses you may be able to recover.
- Expenditure related to unauthorized charges to your accounts
- Charges for freezing of credit report and credit monitoring
- Fees paid to accountants, lawyers and other professionals
- Postage, mileage, notary and other services expenses
- Fees related to credit monitoring,
- Costs for Equifax credit monitoring and other services for one year prior to the breach.
In addition, from 2020, Equifax will provide all US consumers – either part of the settlement or not – six additional free credit reports per year for seven years, from the site.
When do I have to file a claim
The FTC said you have to file your claim by January 22, 2020. The soon you will receive the benefits you qualify for is January 23, 2020, the FTC said.
This is the information we know right now, with many details still to come. We update this story as we learn more.