Credit-monitoring company Equifax announced last Thursday that the company experienced a data breach, leaving the personal data of more than 143 million Americans at risk.
The hackers responsible for the breach gained access to the data through Equifax’s external facing website. The cyber attack was exposed in May, but the company didn’t find out until June.
Exposed data includes social security numbers, birth dates, addresses, driver license numbers and credit history, says ASU Global Security Initiative professor Jamie Winterton.
“If this data was encrypted, then the damages would have been a lot less than they are,” said Winterton. “The FTC is taking this very seriously, whats next for the consumer is to keep an eye out on your credit.”