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Equifax violation: How to claim your settlement share of $ 700 million



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James Martin / CNET

If you were one of the 147 million people whose data were exposed in the main Breach of Equifax data in 2017 you will be able to file a claim soon. The Federal Trade Commission announced on Monday that Equifax agreed to pay at least $ 575 million and up to $ 700 million help to replace the victims of hackers who stole the data from Equifax customers. Settlement payments can cover the amount you used to recover from a violation of a free crediting company – including recovering from theft of your identity – and unauthorized charges for your account.

Part of the settlement is not quite clear. First, the proposed agreement must be approved by the court. Only then will you be able to file a claim. In the following, we offer you tools and links to help you understand the next steps and what you can cover. To get started now, you can collect documents that are related to the violation.

The infringement concerned caused the hackers to steal social security numbers, addresses, credit card information and driving licenses, birth dates and other personal data stored on Equifax servers. As part of its investigation, the FTC argued that the credit office did not take reasonable steps to secure its network.

The exact amount that Equifax will pay out is not fixed. The proposed settlement will begin with a $ 300 million fund to compensate affected consumers who have purchased credit monitoring services. Equifax will also pay $ 175 million and $ 100 million to the state and county districts for the financial protection of consumers in civil penalties.

If the initial $ 300 million infusion will not be adequately compensated for by consumers, according to FTC Equifax, it agreed to contribute an additional $ 125 million to the fund, which would allow a total settlement of $ 700 million. If you are a beneficiary, your settlement portion may include free credit monitoring services and identity theft protection. You may also be entitled to cash payments to cover the costs of an infringement – such as fees for legal services and credit monitoring – free help recovering from identity theft and free credit reports for 10 years.


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Here is how to participate in the settlement.

Prepare your claim

Once the court approves a settlement, you will be able to file a claim to return the money you lost due to a large hack. The following describes how to prepare for the submission of the application.

Find out if the violation has affected you

To verify that your information has been exposed, the FTC will have a site with a tool that you can use to verify that you were part of the violation after the settlement has been settled. You can sign up for the FTC e-mail update to find out when the site and the live tool are.

What will be the payment settlement cover

The proposed agreement limits payments of $ 20,000 per person to help cover the expenses that you have spent to recover from the violation. Here are the costs and expenses that you may be able to reimburse.

  • Costs related to unauthorized debit of your accounts
  • The cost of freezing the credit report and credit monitoring
  • Fees for accountants, lawyers and other professionals
  • Costs for postage, kilometer, notary and other services
  • The cost of Equifax credit monitoring and other services for the year preceding the violation.

In addition, from the beginning of 2020, Equifax will provide six additional free credit ratings per year for seven years to all US users – either part of the settlement or not – on its website.

These are the information that we now know, many more details. We hope that FTC and Equifax will have a lot more when the request window opens. We will update this story when they will. During this time, there is something here to do if you are not sure if you have been affected by the Equifax violation.

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