Consumer frustrations grow over Equifax security breach

(WTNH) — For Mystic resident Betty Duncan, it has been days of frustrations.

“There wasn’t anything I could do over the weekend. I tried. There was nobody answering the phones. I called them first thin Monday morning and wasn’t able to get through,” said Duncan.

Duncan said she has called Equifax several times to put a freeze on her credit file but every time she is prompted to give her personal information she is told the request can’t be processed.

“Really? How many people have been affected by this? How many have the time to keep calling?” asked Duncan.

Equifax first learned of the security breach in July. They didn’t alert consumers until last week. The company estimates that as many as 143-million people may have had their social security numbers, birthdays, addresses, licenses, credit card numbers and other personal information stolen.

The Department of Consumer Protection recommends people check to see if their information may have been compromised by logging on to Equifax asks consumers to enter their last name and the last six digits of their Social Security number. The website will immediately tell you if your information may have been compromised and then users are directed to a form to sign up for free credit monitoring for one year.

The DCP also recommends people request copies of credit reports from all three major companies, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.

For people who are concerned about their identities having been stolen a crdit freeze will stop a thief for applying for credit or opening an account in your name. The companies charge for the service and if you want to apply for credit on your own you will have to lift the freeze, which could take up to a few days.

Duncan is trying to take all the necessary steps to protect her credit rating. She said she is frustrated that a company that is supposed to monitor your accounts could allow themselves to be put in this position.

“I think it’s really horrible because in today’s society we all know there’s hackers. There’s hackers trying to get into every business. So, it’s up to the IT folks at Equifax to ensure that this never happened. It should have never happened but it has and now we have to go froward with cleaning up the mess,” said Duncan.

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