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Equifax says 2.4 million more Americans affected by breach

CBS News logo CBS News 3/1/2018
a flat screen television: Trading information and the company logo are displayed on a screen where the stock is traded on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., September 8, 2017. © Brendan McDermid / REUTERS Trading information and the company logo are displayed on a screen where the stock is traded on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., September 8, 2017.

NEW YORK — Equifax said Thursday that an additional 2.4 million Americans were affected by last year's data breach, but that these newly disclosed consumers had significantly less personal information stolen.

The company says the additional consumers only had their names and a partial driver's license number stolen by the attackers, unlike the original 145.5 million Americans who had their Social Security numbers impacted. Attackers were unable to get the state where the license was issued, the date of issuance or its expiration date.

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In total, roughly 147.9 million Americans have been impacted by Equifax's data breach, which remains the largest data breach of personal information in history.

The company says it was able to find the additional 2.4 million Americans by cross referencing names with partial driver's license numbers using both internal and external data sources.

These Americans were not found in the original breach because Equifax had focused its investigation on those with Social Security numbers impacted. Individuals with stolen Social Security numbers are generally more at risk for identity theft because of how prolific Social Security numbers are used in identity verification.

Equifax Inc. says it will reach out to all newly impacted consumers and will provide the same credit monitoring and identity theft protection services they have been offering to the original victims.

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