The Federal Trade Commission today announced that so many victims of Equifax breaches for cash payments Instead of free credit monitoring, each of them will probably only get a "small amount of money".
Given the amount of data that the company abused in 2017, $ 125 per victim is an absolute penalty. On the other hand, massive corporations like Equifax are often completely spared (or fined) directly by the US Treasury, rather than the people they harmed, and last week we were pretty much on the lookout for it an unexpected $ 125 windfall excited.
You can buy tons of things for $ 125! Unfortunately, this too was apparently too good to be true.
In a blog post titled "Equifax Data Breach: Pick Free Credit Monitoring," the FTC noted that "delighted that millions of people" had filed a claim:
[T] The pot of money , which is paid for [the cash] part of the settlement, is $ 31 million. A large number of demands for cash instead of credit monitoring means only one thing: every person who uses the money option receives only a small amount of money. Nowhere near the $ 125 they could have gotten if not so many claims had been filed.
Oh good! For reasons of proportionality, an estimated 147 million people were affected by the Equifax injury and the cash settlement pool is $ 31 million.
You can see that the second number, being smaller, would be very small if it were divided by the first number. That's just math! Less than a buck for a person, when all claims are filled out and each claimant decides to cash – a net payout of 21 cents, to be exact. And this does not apply to individuals who have claimed additional losses due to identity theft or other hardships.
The FTC, which is really pushing this matter of credit monitoring, notes that we will give greedy applicants the option to change our preference for credit monitoring – made up of the three national credit agencies, which, as you'll recall, are Equifax Instead, the agency estimates that "hundreds of dollars a year" would accrue:
For those who have already filed claims for this cash payment, look for one E-mail of the billing administrator. You will be asked for the name of the credit monitoring service you already have. Or if you want to change your mind, you have the option to switch to free credit monitoring.
money? Oh, nobody for me. Thank you, Federal Trade Commission, for showing me the light.