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Equifax reveals it sucks more than we thought after confirming 2.4M additional customers hit by data breach

The credit reporting bureau's reputation is already in the gutter.
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Equifax really is reveling in its role as America's most-hated company – revealing an update to its 2017 data breach that is sure to piss more people off.

The credit reporting bureau had already revealed last year that the personal details of 145.5 million Americans had been compromised by hackers – with social security numbers among the data stolen.

Now on Thursday, it's confirmed that a further investigation of last year's breach has revealed an additional 2.4 million people had their data taken.

Equifax says these people's names and partial driver's license information was stolen in the breach.

"This information was partial," it says, "because, in the vast majority of cases, it did not include consumers' home addresses, or their respective driver's license states, dates of issuance, or expiration dates."

Related:

– How to protect your identity after a credit breach.

– Equifax has become a giant dumpster fire.

Equifax says it hadn't found these affected accounts before because the hackers were predominantly focused on stealing social security numbers.

Because these 2.4 million people didn't have their SSNs stolen, they didn't immediately come to Equifax's attention.

The company says it will be contacting all those affected.

Interim CEO Paulino do Rego Barros Jr. was at pains to point out this wasn't a new breach, but about "sifting through the previously identified stolen data, analyzing other information in our databases that was not taken by the attackers, and making connections that enabled us to identify additional individuals."

Equifax is now offering a free "Lock and Alert" service allowing customers to lock and unlock their credit reports using a computer or an app.

But ourTip Jar column explains why you should explore alternatives to taking Equifax up on their offer.

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A credit freeze or a fraud alert looks like a better bet.