Members of the Chinese military are behind one of the largest data breaches in history that compromised the social security numbers of nearly half of all Americans, the FBI announced Monday.
The FBI released a wanted poster for four members of the Chinese military or People’s Liberation Army – China’s armed forces.
A federal grand jury has indicted Wang Qian, Xu Ke, Liu Lei and Wu Zhiyong with computer fraud, economic espionage, wire fraud, conspiracy to commit computer fraud, conspiracy to commit economic espionage and conspiracy to commit wire fraud. The FBI said the four men hacked into Equifax, stealing the names, birth dates and social security numbers for 145 million Americans.
The hackers also collected credit card numbers and other personally identifiable information on about 200,000 Americans, according to the FBI.
The 2017 Equifax breach affected nearly half of all Americans, but this is the first time the public is learning who was behind the hack.
Last year, the credit reporting company agreed to pay up to $700 million dollars to settle with affected consumers who were told they could receive up to $125 or free credit monitoring.
The deadline to file for that Equifax settlement has already passed, but you can still file a claim if you had any new identify theft problems after January 22, 2020.
For more details, visit https://www.equifaxbreachsettlement.com/.