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September 12, 2017
NEW YORK — Equifax has been scrambling to explain itself since disclosing last week that it exposed vital data about 143 million Americans — effectively most of the U.S. adult population. It's come under fire from members of Congress, state attorneys general and people who are getting conflicting answers about whether their information was stolen.
The company keeps track of the detailed financial affairs of all Americans in order to gauge how much of a risk they are for borrowing money. That means it and its competitors, TransUnion and Experian, are a detailed storehouse of some of the most personal and sensitive information of Americans' financial lives. And all of it could be used for identity theft.
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