New York launches tough new regs in wake of Equifax breach

The state is cracking down on credit-reporting agencies in the wake of a breach that exposed the personal information of more than 145 million consumers

New York launches tough new regs in wake of Equifax breach

New York State has adopted new regulations to crack down on credit-reporting agencies in the wake of the Equifax data breach.

The breach, which exposed the personal data of more than 145 million consumers, led to the removal of Equifax’s CEO and calls for more oversight into the way credit-reporting agencies like Equifax, TransUnion and Experian collect and use data.

Read more: Equifax breach a ‘huge, significant event’

On Tuesday, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo directed the New York Department of State to issue new regulations “holding consumer credit reporting agencies accountable to the public,” the governor’s office said. The regulations would require credit-reporting agencies to respond within 10 days to requests made on behalf of customers by the department’s Division of Consumer Protection.

Adopted on an emergency basis, the new regulations are effective immediately.

“Consumer credit-reporting agencies have a duty to deal fairly and honestly with all consumers, and here in New York, we will ensure the best protections are available to any victim of deceit,” Cuomo said. “The current status quo of allowing consumers to be penalized for having their data breached is unacceptable, and with the addition of these new protections, this administration will hold agencies accountable and help protect New Yorkers and their financial future.”

Read next: 38 attorneys general ask Experian, TransUnion to stop credit-freeze fees

The new regulations:

  • Require credit-reporting agencies to identify dedicated points of contact for the Division of Consumer Protection so the division can obtain necessary information
  • Require credit-reporting agencies to file with the Division of Consumer Protection and “plainly disclose” all fees associated with “identity theft protection” products
  • Require credit-reporting agencies to provide a list and description of all business affiliations they have with companies marketing credit-monitoring and related products

New York Secretary of State Rossana Rosado said that the regulations provide “a common-sense framework” to help consumers.