Former Equifax CEO testifies before Congress

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Former Equifax CEO testifies before Congress – Oct. 3, 2017

Equifax CEO is out after data breach

Equifax is about to be grilled by Congress for the first time. Or at least one of its former executives is.

Richard Smith, the former CEO of Equifax (EFX), is set to testify Tuesday morning before the House Energy and Commerce Committee about the credit reporting firm’s massive security breach.

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In prepared remarks, Smith apologized again for the breach and said it was the result of “human error and technology failures.”

“To each and every person affected by this breach, I am deeply sorry this occurred,” Smith said in the remarks. “The company failed to prevent sensitive information from falling into the hands of wrongdoers.”

On Monday, Equifax said its breach potentially affected 2.5 million more people than it had previously stated. The total number of people impacted may now be as much as 145.5 million.

Related: How the Equifax data breach happened: What we know now

The breach compromised some of our most sensitive personal information, including social security numbers, addresses, driver’s license numbers.

Federal agencies, state officials and members of Congress are now probing Equifax over its data security practices, customer service response and the possibility of insider trading from executives.

Smith’s appearance Tuesday marks the first of two back-to-back Equifax hearings in Washington. On Wednesday, Smith will testify twice — before the Senate Banking Committee and a Senate Judiciary subcommittee on privacy. And on Thursday he will appear before the House Financial Services committee.

The former CEO may face tough questions from legislators on Equifax’s security lapses, the need for greater regulation and oversight, the months-long delay in announcing the breach and executive stock sales before the breach was disclosed to the public.

Smith stepped down as CEO three weeks after the breach was announced to the public.

CNNMoney (Washington) First published October 3, 2017: 10:01 AM ET

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