At yesterday's Congressional hearings on the Equifax breach, Senator Elizabeth Warren took a moment to enumerate all the ways that Equifax will benefit from doxing 145,500,000 Americans.
For starters, there's the "free" credit monitoring service that was Equifax's initial sop to public outrage over its unforgivable carelessness. While the service is indeed free for the first year, every year thereafter Equifax will autobill you $17/month. If less than 1% of the people who signed up for credit monitoring after the breach forget to cancel, the company will make an extra $200,000,000/year.
Then there's the Lifelock enrollments. Lifelock is a disgraced, fraudulent garbage company that hard-sells useless credit-monitoring services that it buys from Equifax. In the first week after the Equifax breach, Lifelock signed 100,000 new customers at $29.95/month, and Equifax gets a big cut from each of those new customers' fees.
Then there's the fraud-prevention business, which is Equifax's new growth area. With all the breached data floating around online, fraud is at an all-time high. That creates demand for anti-fraud contracts, and Equifax has already been determined to be the only supplier suited to provide those services by federal agencies, who've started to award the company lucrative multi-million-dollar contracts to fight fraud -- which is now set to explode thanks to the all the personal-data plutonium that Equifax just liberally spread all over the world where any rando with bad ideas and low morals can get hold of it.
It's true that Equifax's stock is now down 30%, but as Wells Fargo helpfully reminded us, that's just the market overreacting and Equifax stocks are ""an attractive entry point," a chance to buy into a "high-quality consumer credit franchise" that will "outperform" current projections.
In short, the Senator argued, Equifax has far more to gain from its data breach than it does to lose, with the average victim of a data breach receiving a payout of just $2 in restitution, she said.
“Consumers will spend the rest of their lives worrying about identity theft,” Warren continued. “But Equifax will be just fine—heck, it could actually come out ahead.”
How Equifax Is 'Making Millions of Dollars Off Its Own Screwup'
(via Late Stage Capitalism)
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