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Equifax Engineer Who Designed Breach Website Charged With Insider Trading
The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has indicted a former Equifax engineer on charges of insider trading.
According to court documents, Sudhakar Reddy Bonthu, 44, of Cumming, Georgia, worked for Equifax between September 2003 and March 2018.
Starting September 2013, Bonthu worked as Production Development Manager of Software Engineering in Equifax's Global Consumer Solutions (GCS) business unit. Bonthu's job involved creating software for Equifax's internal use, but also for its clients.
breach  credit_report  data  equifax  gov2.0  hack  identity_theft  legal  privacy  security  crime 
19 days ago by rgl7194
Think You’ve Got Your Credit Freezes Covered? Think Again. — Krebs on Security
I spent a few days last week speaking at and attending a conference on responding to identity theft. The forum was held in Florida, one of the major epicenters for identity fraud complaints in United States. One gripe I heard from several presenters was that identity thieves increasingly are finding ways to open new mobile phone accounts in the names of people who have already frozen their credit files with the big-three credit bureaus. Here’s a look at what may be going on, and how you can protect yourself.
Carrie Kerskie is director of the Identity Fraud Institute at Hodges University in Naples. A big part of her job is helping local residents respond to identity theft and fraud complaints. Kerskie said she’s had multiple victims in her area recently complain of having cell phone accounts opened in their names even though they had already frozen their credit files at the big three credit bureaus — Equifax, Experian and Trans Union (as well as distant fourth bureau Innovis).
credit_freeze  credit_report  equifax  identity_theft  privacy  security 
4 weeks ago by rgl7194
Survey: Americans Spent $1.4B on Credit Freeze Fees in Wake of Equifax Breach — Krebs on Security
Almost 20 percent of Americans froze their credit file with one or more of the big three credit bureaus in the wake of last year’s data breach at Equifax, costing consumers an estimated $1.4 billion, according to a new study. The findings come as lawmakers in Congress are debating legislation that would make credit freezes free in every state.
The figures, commissioned by small business loan provider Fundera and conducted by Wakefield Research, surveyed some 1,000 adults in the U.S. Respondents were asked to self-report how much they spent on the freezes; 32 percent said the freezes cost them $10 or less, but 38 percent said the total cost was $30 or more. The average cost to consumers who froze their credit after the Equifax breach was $23.
A credit freeze blocks potential creditors from being able to view or “pull” your credit file, making it far more difficult for identity thieves to apply for new lines of credit in your name.
equifax  breach  credit_report  data  hack  identity_theft  krebs  privacy  security  credit_freeze 
march 2018 by rgl7194
Former Equifax CIO Charged With Insider Trading
The Securities and Exchange Commission announced today that they have charged a former Equifax CIO, Jun Ying, of alleged insider trading. According to the complaint, Ying exercised all of his vested Equifax stock options and then sold those shares for proceeds close to 1 million dollars before the public disclosure of Equifax's data breach. 
The complaint states that by selling the shares before the data breach was publicly announced, Ying was able to protect himself from over $117,000 in losses that would have occurred due to the plummeting stock price. These actions are considered securities fraud and illegal insider trading according to the SEC.
breach  credit_report  CxO  data  equifax  gov2.0  identity_theft  privacy  security  legal  hack 
march 2018 by rgl7194
Senior ex-Equifax executive charged with insider trading | Ars Technica
CIO allegedly sold $1 million worth of stock 10 days before public learned of breach.
Federal authorities have charged a senior Equifax executive with insider trading for allegedly selling almost $1 million worth of company stock 10 days before officials disclosed a website hack that exposed sensitive information for more than 143 million US consumers.
Jun Ying was CIO of Equifax's United States Information Systems business unit in the months leading up to Equifax's bombshell announcement on September 7 that the breach exposed Social Security numbers, birth dates, and other sensitive data for as many as 143 million people. According to a complaint filed Wednesday by the US Securities and Exchange Commission, Ying's first indication his employer had been breached came on August 25 when he and colleagues received an email alerting them to a "very large breach opportunity" that would require additional capacity from IT systems to process. To keep the Equifax breach confidential, the email and subsequent discussions didn't name Equifax as the victim and instead suggested it involved an Equifax client.
breach  credit_report  CxO  data  equifax  gov2.0  identity_theft  privacy  security  legal  hack 
march 2018 by rgl7194
Checked Your Credit Since the Equifax Hack? — Krebs on Security
A recent consumer survey suggests that half of all Americans still haven’t checked their credit report since the Equifax breach last year exposed the Social Security numbers, dates of birth, addresses and other personal information on nearly 150 million people. If you’re in that fifty percent, please make an effort to remedy that soon.
Credit reports from the three major bureaus — Equifax, Experian and TransUnion — can be obtained online for free at annualcreditreport.com — the only Web site mandated by Congress to serve each American a free credit report every year.
Annualcreditreport.com is run by a Florida-based company, but its data is supplied by the major credit bureaus, which struggled mightily to meet consumer demand for free credit reports in the immediate aftermath of the Equifax breach. Personally, I was unable to order a credit report for either me or my wife even two weeks after the Equifax breach went public: The site just kept returning errors and telling us to request the reports in writing via the U.S. Mail.
breach  credit_report  data  equifax  hack  identity_theft  krebs  privacy  security 
march 2018 by rgl7194
Equifax Hack Might Be Worse Than You Think - WSJ
Hackers accessed more records, including tax ID numbers and email addresses, than Equifax previously announced
Hackers in the Equifax Inc. EFX -1.58% breach accessed more of consumers’ personal information than the company disclosed publicly last year.
Equifax said, in a document submitted to the Senate Banking Committee and reviewed by The Wall Street Journal, that cyberthieves accessed records across numerous tables in its systems that included such data as tax identification numbers, email addresses and driver’s license information beyond the license numbers it originally disclosed.
The disclosure comes some five months after Equifax said it had been breached and personal information belonging to 145.5 million consumers had been compromised, including names, Social Security numbers, dates of birth and addresses. The fact that hackers accessed even more data shows both the vast amount of information that Equifax holds and the risks at stake for consumers given the level of personal information that has been compromised.
breach  credit_report  data  equifax  hack  identity_theft  privacy  security 
february 2018 by rgl7194
The seven most colossal data breaches of 2017 - Malwarebytes Labs | Malwarebytes Labs
If it seems like the words “leak,” “compromised data,” and “breach” are constantly in the news, it’s not just you. The frequency of major data breaches is increasing. According to the Identity Theft Resource Center, the number of breaches is expected to top 1,500 in 2017. That’s a 37 percent annual increase over 2016, which itself was a record year for exposed personal data.
But while most data breaches are small and contained, this year saw a handful of spectacularly bad security fails. Here are the most massive sets of compromised data and data breaches of 2017.
1. Equifax
Let’s start with the Mother of All Breaches.
Equifax, one of the four major credit reporting agencies, revealed in September that cybercriminals had penetrated their network. The breach exposed the data of 143 million Americans—basically, every single adult in the country. Exposed information included names, social security numbers, birthdates, addresses and, in some instances, driver’s license numbers.
It gets worse. Credit card numbers for about 209,000 consumers and documents related to credit reporting disputes for 182,000 people were also exposed.
In response, Equifax offered a suite of identity theft protection services to all Americans, regardless of whether they were impacted or not. The services, which include up to $1 million in ID theft insurance and social security number monitoring, are free for anyone who signs up by January 31, 2018. (Though we doubt the efficacy of these identity theft protection services and don’t recommend people purchase them.)
breach  credit_report  data  equifax  hack  identity_theft  privacy  security 
january 2018 by rgl7194
Unsecured Amazon S3 Bucket Exposes Details on 123 Million American Households
US data analytics provider Alteryx has left an Amazon S3 storage bucket exposed online, leaking the sensitive details of over 123 million US households in the process.
The unprotected server was found by US cyber-security firm UpGuard, which also discovered a similar Amazon S3 server containing sensitive NSA files, and another leaky S3 server containing data from the US Army's CENTCOM and PACOM divisions.
Just like in previous cases, database administrators had left the server's content exposed to anyone that was accessing an easy-discoverable URL while logged into an Amazon account.
Database exposed Experian US household data
While the Alteryx database contained all sorts of data, the two most important files were two database archives belonging to Alteryx business partners, US consumer credit reporting agency Experian and the US Census Bureau.
While the data belonging to the US Census Bureau —the 2010 census results — were already publicly available on the Bureau's Census website, the Experian data was never meant to be exposed.
The Experian data was stored in a file named "ConsumerView_10_2013.yxdb and contained what UpGuard researchers described as the "personally identifying details and data points about virtually every American household."
More precisely, the database contained over 3.5 billion details for over 123 million American households.
breach  data  amazon  security  privacy  credit_report  experian  identity_theft 
december 2017 by rgl7194
Here's How Congress Should Respond to the Equifax Breach | Electronic Frontier Foundation
There is very little doubt that Equifax’s negligent security practices were a major contributing factor in the massive breach of 145.5-million Americans’ most sensitive information. In the wake of the breach, EFF has spent a lot of time thinking through how to ensure that such a catastrophic breach doesn’t happen again and, just as importantly, what Congress can do to ensure that victims of massive data breaches are compensated fairly when a company is negligent with their sensitive data. In this post, we offer up some suggestions that will go a long way in accomplishing those goals.
A Federal Victims Advocate to Research and Report on Data Breaches
When almost half of the country has been affected by a data breach, it’s time for Congress to create a support structure for victims at the federal level.
Once a consumer’s information is compromised, there is a complex process to wade through to figure out who to call, what kind of protections to place on one’s credit information, and what legal remedies are available to hold those responsible accountable. To make it easier for consumers, a position should be created within the executive branch and given dedicated resources to support data breach victims.
breach  credit_report  data  equifax  gov2.0  identity_theft  privacy  security  EFF 
november 2017 by rgl7194
Getting Debt Collectors to Remove Negative Information From Your Credit Report | Nolo.com
The collection agency may tell you that this is not its decision—that only the original creditor can remove the information. Ask for the name and phone number of the person with the original creditor who has authority to make this decision.
credit_report 
november 2017 by berendes

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