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Equifax suffers third blow with criticism over helpline problems

Paloma Kubiak
Written By:
Paloma Kubiak

Equifax has been pulled up over reports of problems with its helpline used for those affected by the data breach earlier this year.

Chair of the Treasury Committee, Nicky Morgan MP, has written to the chief executive of Equifax seeking an explanation after reports its telephone helpline – for those concerned about the data breach – is experiencing problems.

She said these reports are in ‘direct contrast’ to the assurances made by CEO Patricio Remon who stated that “this incident cuts to the heart of what Equifax does. It is our responsibility to fix the problem, and we will”.

As such, her latest correspondence has asked the CEO to provide an explanation of what has happened, and for his assurance that these problems are being resolved.

This is the third blow to the credit reference agency and credit broker.

In September it announced a cyber data breach, putting hundreds of thousands of users at risk of having their personal details accessed. In total, 15.2 million records were accessed between 2011 and 2016. The data breach ran from May 2017 and was discovered in July, a couple of months before it made this information public.

In October, the regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) confirmed it’s investigating the data breach.

The problem with the customer helpline is the latest issue affecting the company.

An Equifax spokesperson, said: “We are aware of the technical problems that have affected some calls to our helpline and are working hard to improve the service consumers receive. Our absolute priority has always been to ensure that impacted consumers get the advice, support and protection they need in a quick and straightforward way.

“We apologise sincerely for any inconvenience caused. We have received the letter from the Treasury Select Committee on this matter and we will be responding as soon as possible.”