Equifax, the US credit reporting agency, settled this week with the FTC over their massive 2017 data breach that left of hundreds of millions of Americans’ Social Security numbers and other data exposed. The $700 million settlement contains a $380,500,000 consumer restitution fund, and now you are able to make a claim on that money. Can we get a hallelujah?
The FTC this morning posted a website to make a claim. Some people are eligible for $125 or free credit monitoring, while others are eligible for even more.
— FTC (@FTC) July 25, 2019
Two of us at The Money Manual HQ tested making a claim, and both of us were eligible for the $125, which gives you an idea of how likely you are to qualify and how sprawling this data breach was.
Once you’re on the website, enter your last name and the last six digits of your social security number, to see if you are eligible. If eligible, you’ll get asked for basic biographical data, and will be able to request either a $125 check or pre-paid card, or free three-bureau credit monitoring. To be able to claim the money you need to have credit monitoring in place, but keep in mind most people already do via a credit card.
There are also a few other forms asking if you’ve lost money trying to recover money from identify theft or whether you’ve been a victim of identity theft. If so, you might be eligible for even more money. Once done with the online form, you’ll get served a claim number, so make sure to save it.
You have until January 22, 2020 to file a claim. Keep in mind, you won’t see this money for a while — the final hearing for this case is set for December 19, 2019 when the settlement will get approved. Meanwhile, while you’re waiting for the money make sure to share this with your family and friends!
Feature Image: Twenty20