Hackers may have the names and social security numbers of 143 million Americans after a massive breach of credit-reporting agency Equifax, the company said Thursday.
That’s more than half of the nation’s adult population, according to census figures.
Hackers also trawled through birth dates, addresses and driver’s license numbers, as well as 209,000 credit card numbers, during a massive breach between mid-May and July 29, the company reported.
“I deeply regret this incident and I apologize every affected consumer and all of our partners,” CEO Richard Smith said.
The hackers “exploited a U.S. website application vulnerability to gain access,” a company statement said.
Upon discovering the massive breach, Equifax hired a “leading, independent cybersecurity firm” to review the attack and recommend ways to prevent future attacks, the company said.
Equifax is offering every U.S. consumer in the country free identity-theft protection and credit-file monitoring through the website www.equifaxsecurity2017.com — regardless whether their information was compromised, Smith said.