The Equifax Data Breach: What to Do

Share This Page

If you have a credit report, there’s a good chance that you’re one of the 143 million American consumers whose sensitive personal information was exposed in a data breach at Equifax, one of the nation’s three major credit reporting agencies.

Here are the facts, according to Equifax. The breach lasted from mid-May through July. The hackers accessed people’s names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses and, in some instances, driver’s license numbers. They also stole credit card numbers for about 209,000 people and dispute documents with personal identifying information for about 182,000 people. And they grabbed personal information of people in the UK and Canada too.

There are steps to take to help protect your information from being misused. Visit Equifax’s website, (This link takes you away from our site. is not controlled by the FTC.)

  • Find out if your information was exposed. Click on the “Potential Impact” tab and enter your last name and the last six digits of your Social Security number. Your Social Security number is sensitive information, so make sure you’re on a secure computer and an encrypted network connection any time you enter it. The site will tell you if you’ve been affected by this breach.
  • Whether or not your information was exposed, U.S. consumers can get a year of free credit monitoring and other services. The site will give you a date when you can come back to enroll. Write down the date and come back to the site and click “Enroll” on that date. You have until January 31, 2018 to enroll.
  • You also can access frequently asked questions at the site.

Here are some other steps to take to help protect yourself after a data breach:

  • Check your credit reports from Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion — for free — by visiting Accounts or activity that you don’t recognize could indicate identity theft. Visit to find out what to do.
  • Consider placing a credit freeze on your files. A credit freeze makes it harder for someone to open a new account in your name. Keep in mind that a credit freeze won’t prevent a thief from making charges to your existing accounts.
  • Monitor your existing credit card and bank accounts closely for charges you don’t recognize.
  • If you decide against a credit freeze, consider placing a fraud alert on your files. A fraud alert warns creditors that you may be an identity theft victim and that they should verify that anyone seeking credit in your name really is you.
  • File your taxes early — as soon as you have the tax information you need, before a scammer can. Tax identity theft happens when someone uses your Social Security number to get a tax refund or a job. Respond right away to letters from the IRS.

Visit to learn more about protecting yourself after a data breach.

Note: This post was updated on October 5, 2017 to reflect that Equifax extended the enrollment period for free credit monitoring from November 21, 2017 to January 31, 2018.




Where is the Potential impact tab this site suggests?

If one places a credit freeze with Equifax does that cover the other two also, or must one go to each and do so? Will the placing of a fraud alert with Experian create a fraud alert with the other two?

When you place a credit freeze, it is effective only at the credit reporting company where you place it. To fully freeze your credit, contact the three nationwide credit reporting companies: Equifax, TransUnion and Experian. You may have to pay to place or lift a freeze, depending on your state law. In most states a freeze lasts until you ask the company to lift it temporarily or remove it.

A fraud alert is different. To place a fraud alert, contact one of the nationwide credit reporting companies. The company you call must tell the other credit reporting companies and they will put an alert on their versions of your report. If you are not a victim of identity theft, but you're worried because your information was exposed in a breach, you can get a 90 day fraud alert. You could renew it. A fraud alert is free.

Website is worthless. Enter my married name and SS# says impacted, enter my maiden name and SS# says not impacted. Which one is it? Please hold them accountable and change the system. What does social security even had to do with our credit? Somehow we have allowed it to become or national identity number when it shouldn't have.

In 2016 my husband's identity was compromised and credit cards opened. We have ID theft protection on our homeowner's insurance policy so I had an advocate and counselor. I still had to do most of the work. It was 3 months of emails, letters, and making reams of copies. I had to dig thru old records because nothing gets deleted on those reports. Many listed transactions were long forgotten but still had to be verified as closed or active. A nightmare!

Why are they still allowed to be in business and why are not required by law to notify me by US mail me (not email me) that this has occurred? They have my social, driver license and obviously my mailing address. Get to it FTC and make some useful laws to protect your citizens. There should be very basic laws that state that any person or company that "stores" and retains SS numbers should have severe penalties(i.e you're out of business done!) when and if they allow that information to be mishandled or stolen. I don't even give my SS to these companies and yet the credit card companies freely give it to them to sell for every credit check someone wants to do. If any system needs to be regulated, this is it!

I will say to all who will listen. The big problem is not just Equifax. It is MONEY and GREED. Those at the top are very rich. They have more than they need while those at the bottom get nothing. If you have low income it can be hard to keep bills paid. Yet large companies and those at the top can get all needs met and more and still never be poor. I say. capitalism does not work and communism does not work. We need Equalism. To those at the top I say. You cannot survive without those at the bottom. This is because without us. You can clean your own toilet,fix your own car,run your own farms,ect. We need those with higher education to sort through to work a good process for all. In it all we need each other as a team. My idea of Equalism. Throw the cash in the trash. Create not just a country but a world where we can educate anyone to their best abilities. That can create a workforce where everyone can do something for society. All human needs can be covered because there is no money involved. When I hear this or that cannot be done because the money is not there. That would go away. Theft would fall. Because if it was setup and run correctly. There be no need for it. In this world. As all needs are met. Then we work on wants. They will come. We do not need rich humans running this. Just good kind people with love for others. People that do not need or want more than another. Then a true government could be trusted. I have said this for years. I have been told. I am trying to create a heaven on earth. This is true. Humans would be happier and want to do more. As it comes along all needs and wants can and will be met over time. people say it can never happen. But it can. We just need to start. It will not happen overnight just over time. Would I see a benefit of this? NO. But future generations would. With this Equifax can have my info because there would be no monetary value to it. There would be no debts. Just let good people that are gods people run it for the good of others. To put it in line. I am poor, I will help any human by my morals and means. I ask for nothing in return because at some point someone will help me. Live love not lost living. My final thought on this part for now. Do you love to hate or hate to love.

All of my info. is Frozen, I had a couple of credit cards, I called up my CC companies and had my account numbers changed, nothing looked funny. Freezing is the way to go no matter what...if you need a house or a car, just unfreeze it, then refreeze, simple. So, change all of your CC numbers, get new cards, and only costs about 10.00 bucks per credit bureau, then if you need to undo it, they give you a long PIN number to do so, to either unfreeze it for a day or two, or week, the refreeze which costs about 10 bucks to do each time, and while you're at it get a report, 2 birds with one stone, I say. Don't jack around with your credit, because it will cost you heavy in more ways then you would care to deal with.....FREEZE IT!! Then unfreeze when you have to, because it's not worth the time and high pressure to fix the big mess you will have to deal with if you don't take a pro active move right now!

Don't enter any info on TrustedID! I followed the instructions and received my confirmation email to then set up account. It wouldn't complete process and both the phone number given on the web page and the one in the email were invalid phone numbers. Scammed again!! This is alarming since I followed the link from this webiste.

Please let me know what phone numbers you called.

The phone # 1-877-742-1415, the one in the email, is BUSY 98% of the time, routing you to a # that is not valid... you have to try repeatedly in order to get a good connect. I was finally able to do it, and asked their folks to fix their phone trunks. Unfortunately, their systems were going thru an upgrade, so they could not help me a bit. was routed to TrustedID phone # 1-888-548-7878 - which put me on 'ignore' for over an hour before I hung up. Such GREAT service...

My credit report drop 127 points all in one day. No changes have been reported to my credit report yet my score drop that low is not heard of. Then I go to equifax put in my information and I get that I might be affected by this breach and to wait for them to email me some information. No date was provided no other instruction what do I do from here please advise?

You can get a free copy of your credit report once every 12 months at Federal law gives you that right. You don't have to pay for the report.

Read the report to make sure the information is correct. If you see mistakes, or see that someone opened new accounts with your information and added them to your account, you can report that to the credit reporting agencies. This FTC article about Free Credit Reports explains more.


So let me understand, I get “free report” once per year to review. Then the other 12 months after I request the report the crooks get to cscrew with my credit unobserved unless I PAY for current reports. So what good is a “free” credit report?

I have not been able to place a security freeze by any means with Equifax. WHY is this company still in business why has it not been closed down.

Thanks for all the negative feed back are there any positive comments? This is scary. I already had a fraudulent charge on my debit card

Why did I have to pay to put a credit freeze on my husband any my credit because equifax messed up? They should be waiving any fees related to this!

Has anyone checked and found they were NOT affected? Equifax should pay...big time.

I entered my LATE wife's last 6 and she's not affected! wonderful.

Entered mymoney and numbers. Was affected

Equifax should be taking care of this problem and all the fees and charges that apply. Why aren't you forcing them to do this?

What are ones supposed to do if we're in a endless loop with these people. Got the date to enroll. Came back that day and started the enrollment. Waited a week for the link. It didn't work, so we had to actually call the number at the bottom of the link. They set it up, but no sending something to reset the password in 24-48 hours. Had more questions, and called Equifax and TrustID directly at different numbers. Now getting the "we don't recognize that number at the bottom of your link." I became frustrated and signed up for LifeLock to at least be protected somewhat in the mean time paying out of our own pockets. It was quick and painless. While my father in law and wife were able to do it within a day or so from the beginning with Equifax. As we no longer trust Equifax, I suggest my wife also sign up. She had a hit immediately from LifeLock about a breach that happened and info on the dark web. Equifax didn't pick any of that up. We aren't protected whatsoever when it come to Equifax. Still waiting for the password email from them. I imagine this will never be completely set up. It's obvious they can't handle peoples personal information or the situation their negligence caused.

Can somebody PLEASE tell me the correct phone number to call. I have now been given 3 INCORRECT phone numbers and have spent more than an hour trying to speak to the right people.

Equifax Captcha made me reply to five images then stopped responding; then told me "Verification expired."

It's all a scam by equifax. You sign up for their "protection" and they now have more information that can be stolen. If you have a credit card, dispute unknown charges. If you have a new card opened under your name, dispute unknown cards. Stop releasing your information to strangers or stop using credit. It's that simple. Take back your power.

Cash is king!

on 9/17 Jan asked "who do you trust". The answer is on American money.

Maybe someone just wanted to say that there was a breach so millions of people would flick to the website and give up their info.i wouldn't put it past our government to do such a thing.

This was helpful but confusing

Equifax lost control of my vital personal records to criminals which now can be very damaging to myself due to possible ID theft, and worse. I, like millions of other are trying to get with Equifax and mitigate the damage. They can't adequateley respond to correct or nullify the loss for being overwhelmed by the fallout. This company needs to be hit hard for this, and people need to be held accountable, even to the point of criminal prosecution. I am sick of being threatened by the established systems that are inept. I am about ready to go back to paper currency and no electronic or banking or credit at this point. Thank you for hearing me out about this. This is around the 4th time my data has been compromised. Enough!

I have signed up for TrustedId from Equifax but the website ( has been non-functioning for the past two days. What good is the service if it is not accessible?

FTC should immediately shut down Equifax and bring criminal charges against the upper echelon at Equifax.

Has Trusted ID Partners really been vetted? Entering all but the first 3 digits on a soc security number leaves it vulnerable. People around my age who started working near the same time have the same first 3 numbers.

This all looks like the scam millions of us are forced to pay for. Stay away.

I heard something on NPR about this breach of Equifax. One day credit agencies just started their business to collect our private information without our consent. We, the public, never signed a consent for them to monitor our every business move. I consented to a relationship with the mortgage company, car dealer, etc. But not Equifax, Transunion or Experian. It's a conspiracy. Now they want to exhort money from us to keep our information safe (which we didn't give to them in the first place).

What about getting a new SSN?

After going to the Equifax website and entering the information, I've received two emails asking for the same information again. The url is https:// trustedidpremier. com . Now I'm wondering if I've made things worse. I need to freeze my credit. But who knows if that will be an actual website. Boy, the credit score companies have it made. They can make our lives miserable and make money doing it.

Equifax took a week even tonrespond to my asking them to tell me my exposure to their astonishing security breach. Their response sent me to a site to register to get information on my risk. That site is not working. A call to Equifax and they tell me the site is not working (uh yeah) and they have no idea if and when it will. FTC, why is this acceptable? What are you doing to get Equifax to protect me from their incompetence?

Just assume you were affected and act accordingly. Put fraud alerts and credit freezes. Put a notice on all existing credit cards for alerts. Sign up for the free credit monitoring. They've been gathering and using information for 20-30 years. Something in the laws that allow them to do this with or without your permission.

This whole thing will happen again. Never going to stop all the hackers. Government should put Equifax out of business. Horrible business people.

Spent the last 2 hours trying to talk to a body... 1st one hung up after 4 seconds, 2nd one listened to me regarding trying to sign up for TrustedID - said I did it too many times (which I DID NOT) - and sent me to another phone #, where I am now on HOLD. Their systems are poorly designed and do not work effectively; small wonder about the data breach...

After getting all runarounds and hangups from Equifax regarding having too many requests outstanding for their TrustedID product, I simply decided to give up. The last person at Equifax stated that all unprocessed COMPLEMENTARY TrustedID requests will be removed after the deadline date set up by Equifax, sometime in November 2017.

Equifax response to their breach has been a colossal FAILURE. Website constantly are unavailable or crash. Information changes every time to login to, that is if you can even get to that step and/or get connected in the first place. Phone lines are constantly busy all day long day after day. Or you get through to a call center in a foreign country like India, where customer service agents claim they can only access your account with your FULL social security number. Really? I don't think so. the FTC should STOP providing website links and phone numbers to that don't work and take them to court, NOW, to seek an injunction forcing corrective actions on behalf of the American Public.



Equifav Trusted ID currently offered as free claims it will "lock" your credit file. From what I have been able to learn this is not as effective as a "credit freeze". Anyone know if I signup for Trusted ID to take advantage of insurance offered can I indicate I want a "credit freeze" as opposed to "credit lock" ?

For placing a security freeze on Equifax, I called (800) 846-5279 which redirected me to their security freeze department whom helped me place the freeze.
That's the only way works for me after trying MANY different ways.

Equifax tells us that their Trustedid site is not working properly. Even though we have signed up for credit monitoring, they cannot begin ours because their web site is not working. Really? So much for the free monitoring they offered.

If I were an Financial Executive and if there where problems in the company stock or other financial problems, then I would be questioned by SEC, FBI and also prosecuted because it was my responsibility. We pay them every month / year for the services and they promise us to keep track of our Credit details and when they do things wrong, all they do is to fire the CEO and CIO. Now these two are safe. This is not the first one though. But who cares now a days. Big companies can do any thing and get away with it. It is the public who got to follow law. These companies do not have to I guess.

just stop borrowing money. these companies make billions allowing people to buy crap they don't need.


Leave a Comment

Comment Policy