Senator Sherrod Brown, a Democrat from Ohio, is leading the charge against credit-reporting giant Experian, demanding that it release details regarding a recent data breach that affected millions of T-Mobile customers.
Brown, the top Democrat sitting on the Senate Banking Committee, specifically requested that Experian provide information regarding the source of the data breach—including what measures Experian is employing to prevent another breach. Brown turned up the heat on Experian, questioning the effectiveness of its credit monitoring and identity theft protection services. T-Mobile teamed up with Experian to offer these services to the affected consumers.
Corporate giants such as Home Depot and Target are facing battles of their own in the wake of their respective security breaches. Home Depot was facing more than 50 separate lawsuits after a security breach rocked the home improvement behemoth in 2014. These suits have since been consolidated into two separate cases—one for consumers and one for financial institutions.
Target has agreed to a $10 million award to satisfy a class action filed against the retail giant for a 2013 breach.
While large corporations are taking steps to prevent to these disasters in the future, the issues raised by Senator Brown highlight the need for immediate action. Legislation from Washington should address this ever-growing issue. Such legislation may require affected companies to inform their customers in the event of a breach no later than 30 days of discovering the breach. 30 days may seem like a long time to be notified after a data breach—it is. Immeasurable damage can be caused in a 30-day window. It is important for consumers to regularly monitor their credit to catch any fraudulent accounts.