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Equifax Data Breach: Beware of Fake Settlement Websites

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Just last week, we told you to go to ftc.gov/Equifax to find out if your information – like your Social Security number – was exposed in the September 2017 Equifax data breach. At that same website, you can also start a claim for benefits available under the settlement that the FTC and others reached with Equifax.

Wouldn’t you know it? People may have already started putting up fake websites meant to look like the official Equifax settlement claims website. To be sure you’re going to the right place, start at the FTC’s page: ftc.gov/Equifax.

A couple more things to remember. You’ll never have to pay to file a claim for these benefits. And anyone who calls and tries to get you to file a claim is almost certainly a scammer.

Comments

who to trust the least, the crooks or equifax? who causes people the most problems with the least solutions? the crooks.....or equifax?

I don't understand why consumers who file for the 125.00 might get alot less because of the number of consumers whose filing for the 125.00. Equifax should have to pay everyone 125.00 who files for it. Nobody wants equifax to monitor when they can't keep their systems from being hacked, it's not fair!! But I bet it didn't affect the pay of the higher ups in equifax.

I received a very official looking email today from EquifaxBreachSettlement.com. Googled it to see if it was legit and landed here. So glad I did. Now I’ll start the claim from FTC.gov, where I can trust it’s safe and authentic. Wish more could be done to stop the digital predation!!

Equifax sent me a Equifax Data Breach form addressed to someone who doesn't live at my home and whom I don't know. Thinking someone might be using my address as a scam, I called Equifax and was told not to worry about it, they were aware of the issue and that it was a clerical error on their part. How can they be trusted with our sensitive, private information when they can't even get this right?

I am curious as to why the FTC has not come out with a reason we need to enter the last six digits of our SS number. It looks like it is a ploy to discourage as many people as possible to participate in the settlement.

I received an email from info@ equifaxbreachsettlement. com which told me to go to this site, www. EquifaxBreachSettlement. com, to see if I was impacted by the Equifax data breach and eligible for the Class Action Settlement. I opened a new browser window and typed that address, www. EquifaxBreachSettlement. com. When I got to that site I clicked on the button "Find Out if Your Information Was Impacted" and was taken to a screen to enter my last name and the last 6 digits of my social security number. I did that and it said I was impacted and eligible for the class action settlement. After I went through this verification step I got nervous that this site, www. EquifaxBreachSettlement. com, might be fake. My question is whether this site is fake, and if so, what do I do now that I entered the last 6 digits of my social security number? Please let me know.

EquifaxBreachSettlement.com is the official settlement website for the Equifax data breach settlement.It is operated by the settlement administrator, not by Equifax.

I just received the following e-mail with a Claim Number and I am looking to confirm validity into what I believe is a phishing/scam attempt:

"According to our records, you filed a claim for alternative compensation of up to $125 in connection with the Equifax data breach settlement and certified on the claim form that you had some form of credit monitoring or protection in place and will continue to have the credit monitoring in place for a minimum of six months from the date of your claim filing.
You must either verify or amend your claim by October 15, 2019.

If you do not, your claim for alternative compensation will be denied. To verify your claim for alternative compensation, you must provide the name of your credit monitoring service that you had in place when you filed your claim. - OR - You can amend your claim to request free credit monitoring instead of alternative compensation. The easiest way to verify or amend your claim is by visiting the official Settlement Website here.

The amount you receive in connection with your alternative compensation claim may be significantly reduced depending on how many valid claims are ultimately submitted by other class members for this relief. Based on the number of potentially valid claims that have been submitted to date, payments of these benefits likely will be substantially lowered and will be distributed on a proportional basis if the settlement becomes final. Depending on the number of valid claims that are filed, the amount you receive for alternative compensation may be a small percentage of your initial claim. Please note that if you do not take action by October 15, 2019, your claim for alternative compensation will be denied. You can also verify or amend your claim by sending us a letter stating either the name of the credit monitoring service you had in place when you filed your claim or that you wish to amend your claim to select credit monitoring instead. Please include your full name, claim number from the top of this email, and zip code to the address below:
In re Equifax Data Breach Settlement; c/o JND Legal Administration; PO Box 91318; Seattle, WA 98111-9418. Further information about your rights and options, including the right to exclude yourself from the settlement, is available at www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com.

This email is from the Court-appointed settlement administrator, not Equifax. Please do not contact Equifax with questions. To contact the settlement administrator, click here. Email Disclaimer

The Equifax Data Breach Settlement Administrator will never ask you to provide sensitive information, such as, your Social Security Number or Tax ID, Bank Account Number, Credit Card Number, Driver’s License or Passport Number, or Password, etc. via email. All email communications sent by the Equifax Data Breach Settlement Administrator OR on behalf of the settlement administrator will originate from Info @equifaxbreachsettlement. com, the official email address of the settlement. If you receive an email which you suspect to be fraudulent, do not reply or do anything it instructs you to do, but immediately forward it to abuse@ equifaxbreachsettlement. com. To unsubscribe, please click on the following link: unsubscribe"

The fact that it mentions explicitly not to contact Equifax with questions is what strikes me as odd. When I hover over the link, it directs me to equifaxbreachsettlement com which raises another red-flag. Any help you can provide on this would be appreciated.
Thanks, Billy R. Gilbert

If you filed a claim before August 2, 2019, and asked for a cash payment of up to $125, you'll get an email that says you have to take steps to get your benefits. If you want benefits, follow the instructions in the email. You must:

  • give the name of the credit monitoring service you had when you asked for the cash payment OR
  • change your claim to ask for credit monitoring instead of the cash payment

You must verify your credit monitoring service or amend your claim before October 15, 2019, or your claim may be denied.

Get more information about the settlement at www.FTC.gov/Equifax or www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com.

What about fake emails!!!!

Today I received an email regarding the settlement. stating the settlement may be less than $125 because of the # of people requesting refund rather than monitoring. They also asked for the settlement case number and requested that I provide the security company I have which is monitoring my credit.
Is this legitimate?

If you filed a claim before August 2, 2019, and asked for a cash payment of up to $125, you'll get an email that says you have to take steps to get your benefits. If you want benefits, follow the instructions in the email. You must:

  • give the name of the credit monitoring service you had when you asked for the cash payment OR
  • change your claim to ask for credit monitoring instead of the cash payment

You must verify your credit monitoring service or amend your claim before October 15, 2019, or your claim may be denied.

Get more information about the settlement at www.FTC.gov/Equifax or www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com.

I received an email today from info@equifaxbreachsettlement.com stating my claim number and that I need to confirm or amend my claim by October 15, 2019 and that if I do not my claim for alternative compensation will be denied. Is this email to be trusted or is it a scam?

If you filed a claim before August 2, 2019, and asked for a cash payment of up to $125, you'll get an email that says you have to take steps to get your benefits. If you want benefits, follow the instructions in the email. You must:

  • give the name of the credit monitoring service you had when you asked for the cash payment OR
  • change your claim to ask for credit monitoring instead of the cash payment

You must verify your credit monitoring service or amend your claim before October 15, 2019, or your claim may be denied.

Get more information about the settlement at www.FTC.gov/Equifax or www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com.

Upon following the link to see if I was affected, it requires the last six of my social. Is this safe?

Is this a legit email, and can they amend their settlement offer after the fact?
According to our records, you filed a claim for alternative compensation of up to $125 in connection with the Equifax data breach settlement and certified on the claim form that you had some form of credit monitoring or protection in place and will continue to have the credit monitoring in place for a minimum of six months from the date of your claim filing.

You must either verify or amend your claim by October 15, 2019.

If you do not, your claim for alternative compensation will be denied. To verify your claim for alternative compensation, you must provide the name of your credit monitoring service that you had in place when you filed your claim. - OR - You can amend your claim to request free credit monitoring instead of alternative compensation. The easiest way to verify or amend your claim is by visiting the official Settlement Website here.

The amount you receive in connection with your alternative compensation claim may be significantly reduced depending on how many valid claims are ultimately submitted by other class members for this relief. Based on the number of potentially valid claims that have been submitted to date, payments of these benefits likely will be substantially lowered and will be distributed on a proportional basis if the settlement becomes final. Depending on the number of valid claims that are filed, the amount you receive for alternative compensation may be a small percentage of your initial claim.

Please note that if you do not take action by October 15, 2019, your claim for alternative compensation will be denied.

If you filed a claim before August 2, 2019, and asked for a cash payment of up to $125, you'll get an email that says you have to take steps to get your benefits. If you want benefits, follow the instructions in the email. You must:

  • give the name of the credit monitoring service you had when you asked for the cash payment OR
  • change your claim to ask for credit monitoring instead of the cash payment

You must verify your credit monitoring service or amend your claim before October 15, 2019, or your claim may be denied.

Get more information about the settlement at www.FTC.gov/Equifax or www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com.

Just today, I received a FAKE Equifax Amendment email,I was supposed to click the website page, or the adminsitrator's page or info@equifaxsettlement.com. I knew it was a scam, so I didn't open it. Nowhere did it mention FTC.org Thank You

If you filed a claim before August 2, 2019, and asked for a cash payment of up to $125, you'll get an email that says you have to take steps to get your benefits. If you want benefits, follow the instructions in the email. You must:

  • give the name of the credit monitoring service you had when you asked for the cash payment OR
  • change your claim to ask for credit monitoring instead of the cash payment

You must verify your credit monitoring service or amend your claim before October 15, 2019, or your claim may be denied.

Get more information about the settlement at www.FTC.gov/Equifax or www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com.

My husband and I both got an email asking us to verify our information for the settlement is this true ?

If you filed a claim before August 2, 2019, and asked for a cash payment of up to $125, you'll get an email that says you have to take steps to get your benefits. If you want benefits, follow the instructions in the email. You must:

  • give the name of the credit monitoring service you had when you asked for the cash payment OR
  • change your claim to ask for credit monitoring instead of the cash payment

You must verify your credit monitoring service or amend your claim before October 15, 2019, or your claim may be denied.

Get more information about the settlement at www.FTC.gov/Equifax or www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com.

Received an email stating that stated:

Your Claim Number: PD5xxxxxxx According to our records, you filed a claim for alternative compensation of up to $125 in connection with the Equifax data breach settlement and certified on the claim form that you had some form of credit monitoring or protection in place and will continue to have the credit monitoring in place for a minimum of six months from the date of your claim filing.
You must either verify or amend your claim by October 15, 2019.

If you do not, your claim for alternative compensation will be denied. To verify your claim for alternative compensation, you must provide the name of your credit monitoring service that you had in place when you filed your claim.
- OR - You can amend your claim to request free credit monitoring instead of alternative compensation. The easiest way to verify or amend your claim is by visiting the official Settlement Website here. The amount you receive in connection with your alternative compensation claim may be significantly reduced depending on how many valid claims are ultimately submitted by other class members for this relief. Based on the number of potentially valid claims that have been submitted to date, payments of these benefits likely will be substantially lowered and will be distributed on a proportional basis if the settlement becomes final. Depending on the number of valid claims that are filed, the amount you receive for alternative compensation may be a small percentage of your initial claim.

Please note that if you do not take action by October 15, 2019, your claim for alternative compensation will be denied.

You can also verify or amend your claim by sending us a letter stating either the name of the credit monitoring service you had in place when you filed your claim or that you wish to amend your claim to select credit monitoring instead. Please include your full name, claim number from the top of this email, and zip code to the address below:
In re Equifax Data Breach Settlement ; c/o JND Legal Administration; PO Box 91318; Seattle, WA 98111-9418
Further information about your rights and options, including the right to exclude yourself from the settlement, is available at www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com. This email is from the Court-appointed settlement administrator, not Equifax. Please do not contact Equifax with questions. To contact the settlement administrator, click here. Email Disclaimer

This does not look legitimate.

If you filed a claim before August 2, 2019, and asked for a cash payment of up to $125, you'll get an email that says you have to take steps to get your benefits. If you want benefits, follow the instructions in the email. You must:

  • give the name of the credit monitoring service you had when you asked for the cash payment OR
  • change your claim to ask for credit monitoring instead of the cash payment

You must verify your credit monitoring service or amend your claim before October 15, 2019, or your claim may be denied.

Get more information about the settlement at www.FTC.gov/Equifax or www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com.

How do you find out if you are on the list. When you have had fraud commented against you.

You can check to see if your information was effected at www.FTC.gov/Equifax.

I received a notice on Aug. 24, 2019 from donotrespond@ equifaxbreachsettlement. com notifying me of the breach settlement, so I went to the link it gave, and filled out my claim. But I failed to notice that it was sent to an email account that I rarely use. I also never received email confirmation that I had filed the claim. Then, on Sept. 26, 2019, I again received a notice, from the same email address, and this time I noticed that it was not sent to my usual email address. That's when I became suspicious and Googled... but I am not sure whether the emails I received are legitimate or a scam (they look legitimate to me). I went to the official link posted on THIS site and filed again, but again, I have not received email confirmation that I have filed. What's up with that? And if they are legitimate, why are they not coming to my regular email address?

Frequently Asked Question #19 on the settlement website www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com says checks or pre-paid cards for valid claims for out-of-pocket losses, time spent, and alternative reimbursement compensation will be mailed by the Settlement Administrator to the mailing address that you provide. Payments for valid claims will be made after the Court enters a final judgment and the settlement becomes final.

My husband and I both went to the proper website ftc.gov/Equifax months ago to file a claim for the 10 years of free credit monitoring. Neither one of us has heard anything back yet. Have they missed us somehow? Have others on here heard anything back yet on their claims? I would think we would have at least been sent some kind of acknowledgment email after all this time? How can we know they have actually been received? Thank you.

Frequently Asked Question #19 on the settlement website www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com says if you make a valid claim for credit monitoring services, the Settlement Administrator will send you information about how to activate your credit monitoring after the settlement is final. The settlement will be final on January 23, 2020 at the earliest.

The Settlement Administrator will send you an activation code and link to the Experian website where you can enroll and activate your credit monitoring services. The settlement will be final on January 23, 2020 at the earliest.

Just got one.

Please read the entire comment and not give a canned answer to my question as I have seen on so many other comments.

Received the same email as many others did wanting to verify who monitored your credit.
--You must either verify or amend your claim by October 15, 2019.

If you do not, your claim for alternative compensation will be denied.
• To verify your claim for alternative compensation, you must provide the name of your credit monitoring service that you had in place when you filed your claim.
- OR -
• You can amend your claim to request free credit monitoring instead of alternative compensation.

****There was no other choice on the form when completing the claim in July of this year. My options were the following:

You may be eligible to receive free credit monitoring or up to $125 if you already have credit monitoring.

You can receive free, three-bureau credit monitoring at all three national credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion). Experian will provide this service for at least 4 years. You can also enroll in free, single-bureau credit monitoring of your Equifax credit file, provided by Equifax, for up to 6 years after the Experian service ends.

Or, if you have credit monitoring services that you will keep for at least six months, you can request a cash payment of up to $125. Your payment may be less, depending on the number and amount of claims filed.

Please select either Option 1 or Option 2 below, but not both.

**** Option 1, Credit Monitoring: I want to receive free, three-bureau credit monitoring.

**** Option 2, Cash Payment: I want a cash payment of up to $125. I certify that I have credit monitoring and will have it for at least 6 months from today.

After reviewing the claim process again it appears you cannot get the money unless you have credit monitoring services and will last for the next 6 months.

So why are they offering money back for the breach only if you have had crediting monitoring services? Like I said, there was no other choice but the two above.

There is more information for you to read. There are other choices.

Read the questions and answers on the settlement website (www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com).

Question #10 says if you claim the alternative cash payment, you can still make other claims for Time Spent or Out-of-Pocket Losses.

Question #7, the FTC information at www.FTC.gov/Equifax, explain that you can file a claim for expenses you paid as a result of the breach, like losses from unauthorized charges to your account, fees paid to professionals, and for your time spent dealing with the breach. There are limits on the dollar amounts you can claim.

How can we be sure this is the REAL FTC?

I tecieved the same email from a legitimate looking site, as many others who have commented here which asks for last 6 of my social security number. This doesn't seem safe. I did not see a specific response to this question, is it safe to give last 6 numbers and would a legitimate site ask for it?

If you don't know whether your information was exposed in the Equifax breach, you can use the look-up tool to find out. The look-up tool is on the settlement website. When you use the look-up tool, you type in your last name and the last six digits of your Social Security number. 

You can get to the look-up tool from this FTC website: www.FTC.gov/Equifax.

If you already know your information was exposed and you want to file a claim, go to www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com.

Or, go to www.FTC.gov/Equifax, and follow the link on the FTC page to www.EquifaxBreachSettlement.com.

Just an FYI, be aware of this Additional scam phone number from caller: 1-855-217-5874
They are also pretending to be from the credit bureaus..

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