Equifax profits dive on data breach costs

Equifax profits dive on data breach costs

Equifax has reported a 27% drop in profits in its third quarter results as the costs of recovering from a recently disclosed data breach begin to mount.

Net income attributable to Equifax of $96.3 million was down 27% compared to the third quarter of 2016, while revenue growth slowed to four percent, someway off previous guidance of seven percent.

The credit referencing company posted $27.3m in expenses directly related to the cyber breach, which exposed the data of 145 million in the UK and US. A further $56 million in contingent liabilities against the provision of free credit monitoring services has also been added to the bill.

The initial tranche of expenses, which included costs to investigate and remediate the cybersecurity incident and legal and other professional services, will pale against the full financial damages that will ultimately be incurred as the firm wrestles with a host of lawsuits and regulatory interventions.

Presenting the results, interim CEO Paulino Barros said the company had a long journey ahead to regain the trust and confidence of consumers.

"Our teams have taken immediate actions to improve our data security and provide improved support for consumers who were impacted by our cybersecurity incident," he says. "As we look to the future, I have committed Equifax to four things: protecting consumers, enhancing our security, empowering consumers to control access to personal credit data, and leading our industry to confront the massive economic and national security threats represented by cyber criminals."

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