As a major player in the financial world, the credit reporting agency Equifax has grappled with data security breaches, privacy issues, and consumer rights violations. In 2017, the company suffered a massive data breach which compromised approximately 147 million people’s personal information, including Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, and driver’s license numbers.
In the wake of this data breach, Equifax became embroiled in multiple lawsuits, culminating in a $425 million settlement in 2019 with the Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and all U.S. states and territories.
Fast-forward to March 2023, and Equifax faced another issue: consumers tried to deposit their Equifax settlement checks, only for them to bounce back. Those checks were written by Signature Bank, which regulators shuttered less than 48 hours after the collapse of the Silicon Valley Bank (SVB).
Equifax has faced other legal challenges over the years, including concerns about the accuracy of credit reporting, the fairness of credit scores, and the handling of consumer disputes. If you’re a consumer who has used Equifax, or are among those with checks that bounced, now is the time to protect your data. Here’s what you need to know to take action.
It’s not always about the big cases
If you ever suspect your personal information has been compromised, it’s important to take proactive steps to protect your credit. But fixing the data breach is just the start — you need to make sure your credit report stays accurate and secure moving forward. By taking these steps, you not only safeguard your credit, but reduce the risk of further damage. Here’s what to do:
- Regularly review your credit report at all three bureaus — Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. Free annual credit reports are available at AnnualCreditReport.com.
- Monitor your credit with a credit monitoring service or free tools provided by credit card companies.
- Place fraud alerts or credit freezes on your credit report.
However, if your credit report has been compromised due to mistakes or negligence by Equifax or another credit reporting agency, you might wonder if you can take Equifax to court. The short answer: Yes. But to win, you’ll need to put together a solid case.
You may have a lawsuit against Equifax, or another credit agency, if they:
- Fail to conduct a reasonable investigation after a dispute is filed
- Falsely report someone as deceased on their report
- Mix or merge your files — where the credit information of two or more individuals is incorrectly combined
- Failed to prevent identity theft
To make a strong case, however, it’s essential to back up your claims with accurate information and solid evidence. Begin by reviewing your credit report from the major bureaus for any discrepancies. Keep a detailed record of all communications, including letters and emails, and retain copies of any disputes filed.
Lastly, it’s important to reach out to an experienced attorney who can be an invaluable ally in filing a lawsuit against Equifax and building your case. They can navigate the complexities of credit reporting and consumer rights, such as the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), collect evidence, and advocate on your behalf.
False credit reporting damage?
Today, Equifax is a multinational corporation that collects and aggregates information on over 800 million individual consumers and more than 88 million businesses worldwide. As one of the Big Three credit reporting agencies in the U.S., it holds a great deal of power over your credit score and financial reputation.
When it comes to protecting your data, seeking legal guidance from an experienced attorney to sue Equifax is essential. Whether you’re dealing with false credit reporting, loans, or mortgage issues, you need an ally on your side to fight back. Take proactive steps to safeguard your reputation and financial well-being today.