Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that Equifax was hacked surfaced and 143 million Americans have potentially had their personal information stolen. What many have been wondering is what exactly do the hackers plan to do with all that stolen data. A report making the rounds claims that the hackers want a massive ransom from Equifax to return the data.
Hackers made the ransom demand on an unnamed Darkweb site stating that they would delete the data if they receive a ransom payment of 600 BTC, which would be worth about $2.6 million at current valuation. The value of Bitcoin is at one of its highest points ever right now, having jumped past $4,000 for the first time in mid-August thanks to faster transaction code.
The hackers have given Equifax until September 15 to pay the ransom or the data will be publicized. The hackers wrote, "We are two people trying to solve our lives and those of our families. We did not expect to get as much information as we did, nor do we want to affect any citizen. But we need to monetize the information as soon as possible."
The hackers have reportedly stated that if they do publicize the data, they would keep the credit card information out and possibly sell that information on its own to make more money. This hack will undoubtedly result in legal action against Equifax by people affected in the hack.
In fact, a class action suit has already been filed against Equifax seeking "fair compensation" for those whose information was stolen. "In an attempt to increase profits, Equifax negligently failed to maintain adequate technological safeguards to protect Ms. McHill and Mr. Reinhard's information from unauthorized access by hackers," wrote attorney Michael Fuller in the complaint. "Equifax knew and should have known that failure to maintain adequate technological safeguards would eventually result in a massive data breach."
Before the hack had been disclosed, some executives at Equifax sold off $1.8 million in stock. Allegations against the executives claim that Equifax knew the massive scope of the breach on July 29 and the execs sold off the stock on August 1 and 2. Equifax claims that the execs had no idea that the intrusion had occurred when they sold off the stock.