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EQUILEAKS: more holes than Equifax can seal

A leak is never good. One that is hard to plug is worse. In today’s digital world where everything is online, leaks are aplenty.

What you do on a computer stays on the computer and is, therefore, always vulnerable to hacks. A stranger gaining access to even a single photo is a cause for concern, so what would the average person go through if they found out all their personal data landed in the dark web?

What you do on a computer stays on the computer

Last September, data aggregator Equifax reported a cybersecurity incident wherein hackers gained access to consumer information which included names, addresses, birth dates, driver’s license numbers and Social Security numbers. This incident was claimed to have impacted more than 140 million consumers in the US and even affected some in the UK and Canada.

Now they say there is more.
“Oh, cybersecurity, thou art a heartless one!”

Apparently, the breach exposed more information than was initially reported. This information includes tax identification numbers, phone numbers, emails, credit card expiry dates, license state and issue dates.

 

Image Courtesy: Hloom via Flickr / CC BY-SA, 401(K) 2013

 

Yes, it’s a full-blown Equileaks!!

This raises two very pertinent questions for the affected consumers. “How much do these crooks know about us now?” and “how do we make sure they don’t misuse this information?”

With this personal information, the possibilities are endless. Identity theft, illegal activities under aliases, and the more information they have, the easier it is to get past security and identification protocols of various agencies.

This new revelation does not paint a very pretty picture of Equifax. It points to the vulnerabilities within the company and to the possible inefficiency in dealing with this issue. The various measures Equifax took in the aftermath of the incident were not as helpful as expected and did not give consumers much relief. This news is adding to their pain.

What’s worse is these individuals did not give their information to Equifax out of their own accord. The company, like its peers, collects this data from various sources including social media, all on the assurance that it is safe in their hands. It looks like that’s not the case, after all.

Data breaches are becoming all too common and much a reason for worry. The fact that there are unscrupulous elements out there waiting to get their hands on your valuable private information is a nightmare. The fact that entities tasked with keep our data safe are leaving their backdoors open is enough to give us all many a sleepless night.

Equifax is facing many regulatory investigations along with many lawsuits from consumers. Not to mention, its reputation has taken a hard hit.

The Equifax incident has been described as one of the largest data breaches in history. Let’s hope the data giant has done enough damage control to not spiral it further into the rabbit hole.

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And now, we’ve compiled an infograph to help you through the year of leaks that was…

Major Data Breaches of 2017, an overview

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