Equifax, a credit rating company, said Thursday that hackers had gained access to files that include names and Social Security numbers of 143 million Americans.
The company said the personal information was obtained during a breach that began in May and was discovered in July.
Equifax has started contacting those impacted by the hack via email, and it has also set up a website, www.equifaxsecurity2017.com, to help users find information on the breach and check to see if they were affected.
“This is clearly a disappointing event for our company, and one that strikes at the heart of who we are and what we do. I apologize to consumers and our business customers for the concern and frustration this causes,” Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Richard F. Smith said in a statement on the company’s website.
We pride ourselves on being a leader in managing and protecting data, and we are conducting a thorough review of our overall security operations. We also are focused on consumer protection and have developed a comprehensive portfolio of services to support all U.S. consumers, regardless of whether they were impacted by this incident.
Read the company's full statement here.