facepalm: Given Equifax’s less-than-stellar history of massive data breaches, insider trading, and class action lawsuits, it’s safe to assume the company is very careful not to do anything that could further damage its reputation; but here we are. The credit reporting giant says it provided incorrect credit ratings to US consumers seeking loans for three weeks earlier this year and blames it on a “technological coding problem.”

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Wall Street Journal writes that from mid-March to early April, Equifax sent out inaccurate estimates of consumers who applied for auto loans, mortgages and credit cards to banks and other lenders of various sizes.

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The WSJ adds that millions of people in the US have been affected by the Equifax bug, with some estimates down as much as 20 points in either direction. Credit scores typically range from 300 to 850; a score of 670 to 739 is considered good, 740 to 799 is very good, and 800 and above is excellent. This discrepancy of 20 points was enough for some borrowers to reject the person’s application.

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In a small number of cases, applicants have gone from no credit score at all to a score of 700 or vice versa. Equifax began disclosing the errors to lenders, including Ally Financial, JPMorgan Change and Wells Fargo, in May.

Equifax He speaks fewer than 300,000 consumers experienced a score change of 25 points or more. It claims that the issue was due to “an encoding issue in a legacy on-premise server environment in the US that is planned to be migrated to Equifax’s new cloud infrastructure”, which caused some of the attributes used in the model’s calculations to be miscalculated. The company emphasizes that the credit reports were not changed in connection with the release.

“We know that businesses and consumers depend on our data, and Equifax takes this technology coding challenge very seriously. We can confirm that the issue has been resolved and that we are working closely with our customers on analysis to best meet consumer needs. ,” the company said in a statement.

In September 2017 Equifax announced one of the worst data breaches in history. Approximately 143 million consumers in the US as well as worldwide have been affected by the theft of credit card numbers and personal information. A week before the news broke, then-CIO Jun Ying exercised his stock options and sold them for almost $1 million, thus avoiding the $117,000 loss he would otherwise have incurred. He was in prison in 2019 for insider trading. The FTC also issued a $700 million fine to Equifax for the violation. class action for which she agreed to pay at least $380.5 million.