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It’s your last chance to claim a slice of the Equifax data breach settlement

Equifax
The Equifax data breach in 2017 exposed personal information of 147 million people.
(Smith Collection/Gado / Getty Images)

The more than 147 million people whose data were exposed in a 2017 Equifax data breach are entitled to money or free credit monitoring, but time is running out to file a claim for it.

Wednesday is the deadline. You can find out whether you were affected by the breach at this website created by Equifax, and you can file a claim here.

Under a $700-million settlement between the credit rating firm and the Federal Trade Commission, affected people — including 15 million Californians — can submit a claim for up to $125 or up to 10 years of credit monitoring.

But the payout might be far less than $125 — perhaps less than $10. That’s because so many people have been filing claims for the cash, divvying up the $31-million pot of money that pays for these claims out of the $700-million overall settlement into smaller and smaller pieces.

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The credit bureau’s $700-million settlement resulting from its 2017 data breach is leaving many consumers confused.

The free credit monitoring provides four years of monitoring from Experian that covers the three major credit rating firms: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Robert Schoshinski, an assistant director at the FTC, encouraged people to opt for the free credit monitoring in a July blog post. But some experts have said the cash payout, even if it’s small, is a better option.

People who spent time or money to recover from the breach may be able to claim up to $20,000.


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