Nationalize the credit bureaus

13 Sep , 2017 Business

Equifax, the credit-reporting agency, has suffered one of the worst data breaches in history, with 143 million American citizens having their personal data stolen. Worse, Equifax executives reportedly sold a bunch of their company stock after they heard of the breach, but before it was released to the public. Then they followed up that potentially illegal act with perhaps the worst response to a corporate data breach in history, setting up a clearly nonfunctional site that attempted to trick people into signing away their right to a class-action lawsuit, and into signing up for a one-year trial of a credit oversight service that costs $20 per month after it expires.

It’s time to nationalize the credit reporting industry — not just Equifax, but also the other two major credit bureaus: Experian and TransUnion. The power to adjudicate creditworthiness should not be in private hands.

On one level, Equifax’s insouciant attitude likely reflects the rot and corruption among top federal prosecutors, law enforcement agencies, and regulators. Back in the day, this kind of thing — especially the probable insider trading — would raise fears of prosecution and jail time. But as Jesse Eisinger’s excellent new book The …read more

Source:: The Week – Business

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