Federal probe launched after Equifax data breach


The Federal Trade Commission on Thursday confirmed that it is investigating a massive data breach at credit reporting giant Equifax that exposed the sensitive information of millions of Americans.

>> Read more trending news

Peter Kaplan, FTC’s acting director of public affairs, said that the agency typically does not comment on ongoing investigations in a statement obtained by Politico.

“However, in light of the intense public interest and the potential impact of this matter, I can confirm that FTC staff is investigating the Equifax data breach,” Kaplan said.

Equifax, one of America’s three major credit bureaus, said last week that a “cyber security incident” might have exposed the names, Social Security numbers, birth dates and addresses of 143 million Americans. Driver’s license numbers might have also been accessed, the company said.

The breach took place from mid-May through July 2017, according to Equifax.

>> Related: Equifax reports massive data breach that could affect 143 million in U.S. 

Equifax set up a website to help affected consumers and keep them abreast of updates in the company’s investigation. On a frequently asked questions section of the site, Equifax officials identified the flaw that allowed hackers to access sensitive information as one flagged publicly last year.

A patch for the vulnerability, Apache Struts CVE-2017-5638, was released by The Apache Software Foundation in March, Bloomberg reported.

>> Related: Equifax cyberattack: What to know

Sen. Mark Warner, D-Virginia, a member of the Banking, Budget and Finance committees and cofounder of the Senate Cybersecurity Caucus, on Wednesday called for an investigation into the data breach. 

“The volume and sensitivity of the data potentially involved in this breach raises serious questions about whether firms like Equifax adequately protect the enormous amounts of sensitive data they gather and commercialize,” Warner wrote in a letter addressed to FTC Acting Chairwoman Maureen Ohlhausen.

>> Related: Equifax cyberattack: How to get a free credit report, protect your identity

He called the incident “one of the largest, and potentially most impactful, breaches in recent history.”


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Nation & World

Roger Goodell calls Trump’s attack on NFL players’ protests ‘divisive’
Roger Goodell calls Trump’s attack on NFL players’ protests ‘divisive’

National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell has called President Donald Trump’s comments on NFL players’ national anthem protests, “divisive.” "The NFL and our players are at our best when we help create a sense of unity in our country and our culture,” Goodell said in a statement Saturday morning...
People with this face shape are more likely to cheat, study suggests
People with this face shape are more likely to cheat, study suggests

Can you predict a person’s sexual drive and likelihood to cheat just by looking at them? You might. Those with wider dimensions are more likely cheat, according to a new report. Researchers from universities in Canada recently conducted two experiments, which were published in Archives of Sexual Behavior, to determine the link between physiological...
Substitute teacher fired after teaching third-graders Nazi salute
Substitute teacher fired after teaching third-graders Nazi salute

A substitute teacher in Vermont is out of a job after she reportedly taught a group of 3rd graders a Nazi salute. In a letter to parents, Franklin West Supervisory Union Superintendent Ned Kirsch wrote that a long-term substitute was released after demonstrating the Nazi salute to students at Georgia Elementary & Middle School in Georgia, Vermont,...
Google honors Indian chemist Asima Chatterjee with doodle
Google honors Indian chemist Asima Chatterjee with doodle

Have you peeped Google today? It’s all about Asima Chatterjee, a renowned Indian chemist. The search engine site, which sometimes uses its homepage to honor prominent figures, is highlighting the pioneer on what would have been her 100th birthday.  Born in 1917 in Bengal, Chatterjee grew up in a middle class family. When she was encouraged...
Trump withdraws White House invitation to Golden State Warriors
Trump withdraws White House invitation to Golden State Warriors

President Donald Trump has withdrawn an invitation to the Golden State Warriors to visit the White House after Warrior’s guard Stephen Curry told reporters on Friday that he didn’t want to go. “Going to the White House is considered a great honor for a championship team,” the president tweeted Saturday morning “Stephen...
More Stories