Tech

Equifax CEO says company still faces cyberattacks every day

Key Points
  • Equifax reaches a $700 million settlement with states and regulators regarding its 2017 data breach. 
  • "It's a war that, from our perspective, isn't going to end," Equifax CEO Mark Begor told CNBC.
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Watch CNBC's full interview with Equifax CEO Mark Begor

Equifax CEO Mark Begor told CNBC on Monday that cyberattacks are the greatest threat facing businesses and governments around the world, and that his company is constantly under attack.

"Companies are attacked every day, and you and I see announcements every week of cyberattacks," Begor said on "Closing Bell." "It's a war that, from our perspective, isn't going to end."

Federal regulators announced a settlement of up to $700 million with Equifax on Monday for a 2017 data breach that impacted more than 140 million people. The Federal Trade Commission alleged that the credit bureau was slow to patch a flaw in its security system that resulted in hackers being able to steal 145.5 million Social Security numbers, among other sensitive information. As part of the settlement, Equifax has agreed to bolster its security practices and have its policies assessed regularly by a third party.

"We get attacked every day," Begor said. "And we're preventing those attacks, but they're going to continue. And it's really a war that's being attacked on every American company."

Between $300 million and $425 million of the settlement is slated to go to a consumer fund.

"This comprehensive settlement was a priority of ours and is quite unprecedented, to bring so many groups together," Begor said. "And the second priority of ours and the regulators was a single consumer fund, and it was really a focus on doing the right thing for consumers."

Equifax will pay $300 million to a third-party claims administrator that will determine how to distribute the money to consumers, Begor said. The company will pay up to $125 million more if claims exceed the initial amount, according to the FTC.

The rest of the settlement will be paid to states and regulators.

Begor, who became CEO after the scandal, said there's no proof the data breach has had a negative impact on the impacted consumers.

"There's no evidence to date that any of the data was stolen in September of '17 has either been sold on the dark web or any increases in identity theft to date," he said.

— Reuters contributed to this article.

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