Equifax Data Breach: What you can do About it in Canada
September 13, 2017
You may have heard the news about the Equifax data breach. At Borrowell, we believe in helping Canadians make great decisions about credit – and this means being as transparent and helpful as possible.
We’ve been in contact with Equifax directly and they’ve confirmed that a limited number of Canadians have been affected by the breach. Also, if your information was compromised, Equifax intends to reach out to you directly with support as soon as they have identified who has been affected.
Equifax, the credit bureau Borrowell uses to provide free credit scores, announced last week that it was the subject of a data breach. This breach has reportedly affected many Americans, but only a limited number of Canadians.
What information was taken?
The hackers may have obtained sensitive information, such as names, addresses, and Social Insurance Numbers. Only a limited number of Canadians may have been affected and Equifax is working on finding out how many.
How will this affect me?
If your information was compromised, it may put you at the risk of identity theft. Identity theft is when someone steals your personal information to open new accounts or commit criminal activity using your name. We encourage you to monitor your credit and remain vigilant in checking your financial statements.
I’ve used Borrowell to access my Equifax credit score. Has my information been compromised?
Equifax is the largest credit bureau in Canada and is widely used by lenders, including banks, to determine creditworthiness. Equifax collects data from your bank and other sources to calculate your credit score, which is then provided to lenders.
Having checked your credit score using Borrowell is completely unrelated to the hack. If you’ve ever applied for credit, for example by applying for a credit card or a cell phone plan, Equifax has most likely already collected your personal information.
Is Borrowell still secure?
Yes, Borrowell is still secure and is in no way directly affected by the breach.
This incident is a reminder of the importance of data security, which is something we take very seriously. We use bank-level encryption to protect your data and this data will never be sold to a third party without your explicit consent. Read more about our privacy and security policy here.
Your next steps:
1. Monitor your credit score
After incidents like this, it’s important to monitor your credit score and be aware of any changes. If you don’t know your credit score, you can check yours for free here. If you are already a Borrowell customer, pay close attention to your next score update and monitor for suspicious activity.
2. Monitor your credit card statements and bank accounts
Your credit cards and bank accounts are also important to monitor. Keep an eye out for any transactions you did not authorize and report any issues to your bank or credit card company right away.
3. Report any theft or crime
If you identify a concern that involves a theft or crime, report the incident to local police. You can also report scam or fraud to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre. Tell your bank and credit card companies and close any accounts and cards that may have been compromised immediately.
We’ll keep you updated as we learn more about the situation and will share any additional information here on our blog and on our social media channels. For more information, please contact Equifax at 1-866-828-5961 or visit their website here.