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Potential Impacts from the Equifax Breach

Nov. 16, 2017

From mid-May through July of this year, data thieves broke into the systems of Equifax, a leading consumer credit scoring agency, gaining access to the names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, and, in some instances, driver’s license numbers for more than 143 million American consumers. Initial reports are that several hundred thousand credit and debit cards were also exposed. 

How might this devastating breach impact merchants? Can Vantiv’s value-added services help? 

Following major card breaches, card issuers replaced millions of compromised cards resulting in a wave of declined authorizations for merchants who keep cards on file for recurring or installment billing. Merchants using Vantiv’s Recovery service or any of its Account Updater offerings mitigated the impact of these breaches and maintained billing continuity. 

As of mid-October 2017, Vantiv hasn’t seen evidence – we track rates of “Account Closed” and/or “New Card Number” responses for specific banks and card products, as well as more broadly across the industry – of significant card reissuance. However, given that the bulk of the data stolen was Personally Identifiable Information (PII), the bigger concern is an increase in account takeovers.

Keep in mind that the data stolen in the Equifax breach is the “supply side” of fraud. It may take several months for this to occur. Vantiv advises merchants to be aware of account takeover threats and develop strategies to protect your customers’ accounts. 

If you have questions about how our Fraud Toolkit,Recovery, eProtect tokenization,and Issuer Insights value-added services can help you better protect your business from the impacts of major data breaches, please contact your Vantiv Relationship Manager.  

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