You’d think Equifax was giving you the whole $125. The company has set up another hurdle in consumers’ quest to get their share of Equifax’s $425 million settlement with the Federal Trade Commission.
The settlement is for a 2017 data breach that exposed the personal information of 147 million Equifax customers. Initially, the company was offering $125 to people affected by the breach or free services.
First, Equifax had you apply for the claim even as the $125 offer began dwindling down to a few dollars. Now, the company is asking everyone to verify their claims or lose them.
Equifax sets deadline for claims
People who filed claims for monetary compensation from Equifax were sent this email recently. It asks claimants to verify that they “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.”
If they do not verify the information about credit monitoring protection or ask to get free credit monitoring from Equifax instead by Oct. 15, claims for money will be denied. This move comes as cash for the claims has dwindled and efforts to move people to the Equifax monitoring service have ramped up.
FTC promotes free credit monitoring option
As part of Equifax’s $425 million settlement with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), consumers were given the choice of getting $125 or at least four years of free credit monitoring.
Not surprisingly, there was a stampede of claims for the $125. However, despite the $425 million settlement the cash settlement was capped at $31 million.
As a result, most people will now be getting a very small amount of cash. It could even be down to a few dollars and cents.
Related: Beware of fake Equifax claims websites trying to scam you
With the settlement fund draining, the FTC in July began extolling the virtues of the credit monitoring option.
Along with the four years of free service, claimants will get $1 million of identity theft insurance. The FTC warned that if a person chose the $125 option, “You will be disappointed with the amount you receive and you won’t get the free credit monitoring.”
So, what’s the main take away from the latest Equifax hurdle? If you have received the email from Equifax, act before Oct. 15 or get nothing at all.
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Data breaches are one of the worst disasters that can happen to a company. Not only is your reputation for security tarnished, but your customer’s information is now unleashed to the internet at large. This can lead to a number of worst-case scenarios, including fraud, identity theft and even stalking.
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