Equifax has agreed to pay up to $700 million to settle state and federal investigations into a 2017 data breach, The Washington Post reports. The breach exposed the Social Security numbers, credit-card information, and other private data of more than 147 million people. The case left more than half of U.S. adults vulnerable to identity theft. The penalties include payments to consumers, regulatory fines, and changes to the credit-reporting agency's practices.
"This is the largest data breach settlement in U.S. history," said Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro. "These data breaches occur because of corporate greed. Corporate leaders decided to put an extra dollar of profit into their pocket, as opposed to that dollar going into the infrastructure of the company to protect their data." Equifax did not immediately comment. Harold Maass
The Federal Emergency Management Agency shared the private data, including banking information, of millions of hurricane and wildfire survivors, the Department of Homeland Security inspector general said in a memo that surfaced on Friday.
The unlawful disclosure places the survivors at "increased risk of identity theft and fraud."
The data was shared with an unidentified federal contractor that was helping the 2.3 million survivors from Hurricanes Irma, Harvey, and Maria, as well as the 2017 California wildfires find housing. It included 20 "unnecessary" fields such as electronic funds transfer numbers, bank transit numbers, and addresses.
FEMA said in a statement that it has already begun filtering the data to ensure it cannot be shared with the public, and the organization has said that there is so far no indication that the information has been compromised. But, per CNN, a more permanent fix may not be finalized until June 2020. Tim O'Donnell
Tex-Mex chain Chili's Grill & Bar is the latest company to report a data breach, with parent company Brinker International announcing that it has learned credit and debit card information was compromised at some locations.
Brinker says it learned of the breach on Friday, but did not say which locations were involved. The company said it believes malware was used to gather the information — payment card numbers and cardholder names — between March and April. Brinker added that it is working on figuring out the size of the breach, and noted that Chili's restaurants do not collect personal information from any customers. Catherine Garcia
Hillary Clinton's campaign denied its computers were among the Democratic tech systems reported hacked on Friday in a data breach many suspect may be tied to a Russian intelligence agency, GRU.
Campaign spokesman Nick Merrill said Friday night "an analytics data program maintained by the DNC and used by our campaign and a number of other entities was accessed as part of the DNC hack," but insisted experts "have found no evidence that our internal systems have been compromised."
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee cannot say the same. The DCCC acknowledged evidence of hacking Friday, a breach which follows the recent news that the Democratic National Committee was hacked. After the hackers leaked thousands of internal DNC emails last week — some showing evidence of bias against Sen. Bernie Sanders in the primary process — DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz resigned her post. Bonnie Kristian