Access and Feeds

Security: Will the Equifax Breach Bring an End to Social Security Numbers?

By Dick Weisinger

On Thursday last week, Equifax announced that they had discovered in late July 2017 that their website had had been hacked. The data on their site was breached and it is likely that the personal identifying information for as many as 143 million Americans was compromised, including names, addresses, social security numbers, drivers license numbers, password lost recovery answers, and dates of birth — basically enough information to easily commit identify theft.

Among data breeches the recent Equifax breach ranks third in size, behind earlier data breaches at Yahoo! and Sony.  But the sensitivity of the information lost in the Equifax breech appears to make the implications of this breach significantly worse.

Shuman Ghosemajumder, chief technology officer of Shape Security, said that “I think we were getting to the point where we’d need to replace Social Security numbers as identification even before the breach, but this will be the end.”  But there is no agreement now on what could be used as a replacement to the Social Security number.

Rohit Chopra, a former assistant director at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, told the New York Times that “credit reporting agencies are the plumbing of our financial system but are much less regulated than many banks.”


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One comment on “Security: Will the Equifax Breach Bring an End to Social Security Numbers?
  1. Michael says:

    Im sure the government will rush in to “regulate” the industry, however considering the IRS is still recovering from a massive hack, I’m not sure we will be any safer.

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