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September 12, 2017

Information regarding the Equifax breach

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC) has received a number of complaints and calls from individuals concerned about a data breach at Equifax Inc.

After learning about the breach via media reports, our office contacted Equifax to seek information, including details on how Canadians were affected. Discussions with Equifax are ongoing and the company is cooperating with our office.

We have advised Equifax to provide information to affected Canadians as soon as possible and we expect the company to adopt measures to help affected Canadians.

Equifax has posted some information on its website.

Our office is seized with this issue and will work with other data protection authorities in Canada and other jurisdictions as appropriate to examine what happened and to mitigate future risks for Canadians.

Canadians who are concerned about whether or not they have been affected should not check via the U.S. website that Equifax has set up. The site was designed for use with U.S. social security numbers.

Our office is urging Equifax to find a solution to permit Canadians to find out if they are affected as soon as possible.

Canadians can reach Equifax at 1-866-828-5961 (English service) and 1-877-323-2598 (French service).

Other steps individuals may wish to consider include:

  • Monitor your credit cards and bank accounts regularly and keep a close eye out for any transactions you did not authorize. Report any issues to your financial institution or credit card company right away.
  • If you identify a concern involving a theft/crime, report the incident to local police.
  • Report any incidents involving a scam or fraud to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.
  • If you think you have been targeted by identity fraud, advise your bank and credit card companies. Close any accounts and cancel any cards that may have been compromised.
  • Document any information you have received and steps you have taken regarding the matter.
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