PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The former head of Equifax was grilled on Capitol Hill Tuesday morning over the massive data breach which the company now says is affecting 145 million people.
Richard Smith, who resigned as Equifax CEO last week, spoke before a House subcommittee, and offered an apology.
“I’m here today to each and every person affected by this breach – I’m truly and deeply sorry for what happened,” said Smith.
He says human and technological error is to blame for the breach. Members of the committee, were critical of Equifax for not notifying the public about the hack until September.
Congressman Ryan Costello, who represents parts of Chester and Montgomery County, criticized the way the company responded.
“The slow rollout and how poor it was done,” Costello said. “To me, it’s just inexcusable.”
Smith says they weren’t prepared to deal with so many consumers all at once.
“We went from 500 call center agents to a need of almost 3,000,” Smith said.
And Hurricane Irma affected two call centers for some time, Smith added. Equifax is now offering free credit monitoring and credit freezes.