Two key U.S. senators have asked Equifax Inc to answer detailed questions about a breach of information affecting up to 143 million Americans, including whether U.S. government agency records were compromised in the hack.
Senator Orrin Hatch, who chairs the Finance Committee, and ranking Democrat Ron Wyden, also demanded that Equifax Chief Executive Rick Smith provide a timeline of the breach and its discovery.
It came amid mounting scrutiny of the company’s response to the breach from lawmakers, regulators and security experts, prompting the credit‑monitoring services to issue an apology on Friday and pledge to dedicate more resources to helping affected consumers.
The sensitivity of the information compromised may make it the most costly to US taxpayers and consumers.
Equifax announced last week that it learned on July 29th that hackers had infiltrated its systems in mid‑May, pilfering names, birthdays, addresses and Social Security and driver’s license numbers. Cyber security experts said it was among the largest data hacks ever recorded and was particularly troubling due to the richness of the information exposed.
Three days after Equifax discovered the breach, three top Equifax executives, including Chief Financial Officer John Gamble and a president of a unit, sold Equifax shares or exercised options to dispose of stock worth about $1.8 million.
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