Those sales took place after the company discovered on July 29 that an unprecedented, massive data breach may have exposed personally identifiable information of some 143 million US citizens - or almost 60 percent of adults in America.
The breach, which Equifax disclosed earlier this month, contained a massive database of information that could lead to potential identity theft or fraud. "Canada's federal private sector privacy law, the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents (PIPEDA) includes confidentiality provisions".
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"Consumers are understandably angry and upset about this breach, and their feelings are entirely warranted given the extremely sensitive nature of the compromised information", Jepsen said.
"The investigation is ongoing and this information may be amended as new details arise", Visa said in its confidential alert. "One of the first and most important steps that individuals can take to protect themselves is freezing access to their credit information until they can work with credit reporting agencies to determine their exposure".
Equifax has set up a special website to assist consumers.
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It is also offering Canadians whose data was put at risk free credit monitoring and identity theft protection for the next 12 months, a service offered to USA residents on the day the cyberattack first was announced.
Canadian consumers were referred to a credit monitoring website similar to the website set up for those impacted in the U.S. The state attorneys general launched their investigation shortly following Equifax's disclosure of the breach of consumer files earlier this summer.
The cyberattack occurred through a vulnerability in an open-source application framework it uses called Apache Struts. "Our bill gives consumers more control over their own personal data and prohibits companies like Equifax from charging consumers for freezing and unfreezing access to their credit files".
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It also offers a security monitoring service for 19.95 Canadian dollars ($16) per month.