The Equifax (NYSE: EFX) data breach is calling for a new push for stronger protections on Americans’ personal information. A hack in the company’s computer system revealed 143 million people’s Social Security numbers and birth dates which is difficult for Republican efforts to try to limit the liability faced by credit reporting companies and other financial firms dealing with disputes with consumers. Major cases involved 3 credit reporting companies which are Experian, TransUnion, and including Equifax.
An investigation was launched while the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is looking into the data breach and Equifax’s response. In the coming weeks, the Three House committees, Judiciary, Energy and Commerce, and Financial Services are planning to hold hearings examining what went wrong and what is need to be done in order to better protect consumers from breaches like this in the future.
New regulations were suggested to be warranted for companies such as Equifax that handle sensitive data. The company’s data breach was seized by Democrats as they try to revive previous attempts to increase oversight of the industry and to provide new protections for consumers.
A legislation was reintroduced on Monday to reduce inaccuracies in credit reports and to give consumers more legal remedies when problems occur. A bill that was pushed for in 2016 is also planned to be reintroduced that would overhaul the credit reporting system. The Fair Credit Reporting Act of 40 years old needs to be updated as well since credit scores collected and calculated by companies such as Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian determine if consumers can obtain mortgage, land a job, or finance a car purchase.