Massachusetts can move forward with a lawsuit accusing credit reporting firm Equifax of failing to safeguard its databases or provide prompt notice of a breach that exposed the personal data of 147 million people, a state court judge has ruled.
Suffolk County Superior Court Judge Kenneth Salinger in Boston, in a decision made public on Wednesday, denied a motion by Equifax to dismiss a lawsuit Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey filed after the breach was disclosed in September.
Salinger wrote that the lawsuit stated a plausible claim that Equifax breached its legal duties to address all reasonably foreseeable risks to its data security and to implement reasonably up-to-date fixes to its software.
The lawsuit alleged that Equifax knew or should have known by March 2017 that a serious security vulnerability existed in computer code that the company used in its systems but failed to patch or upgrade its software to eliminate it.
As a result, hackers were able to access its databases and steal personal information, the lawsuit alleged.