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What Customers Need to Know About AT&T’s Massive Data Breach

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Millions of current and former AT&T customers learned over the weekend that hackers likely have stolen their personal information and are doing so. share it on the dark web.

AT&T said Saturday that it did not know whether the massive data breach “originated with AT&T or one of its vendors” but that it had “launched a thorough investigation” into the cause of the incident. The data breach is the latest cyberattack suffered by AT&T since a leak in January 2017. 2023, which reached 9 million users. In contrast, Saturday’s much larger breach affects 73 million current and former AT&T account holders. AT&T found several data breaches on years that vary in size and impact.

While we wait for further details on the investigation, here’s what customers need to know about the most recent data breach.

How many people were affected by the AT&T data breach?

AT&T said Saturday’s breach affected approximately 7.6 million current and 65.4 million former AT&T customers.

What type of information was extracted from AT&T?

AT&T said Saturday that a dataset found on the Dark Web contains information such as social security and access codes. Unlike passwords, passcodes are numeric PIN codes usually consisting of four digits. Full names, email addresses, mailing addresses, phone numbers, dates of birth and AT&T account numbers may also have been compromised, the company said. The affected data is from 2019 or earlier and does not appear to include financial information or call history, it added.

Was my information affected by the AT&T data breach?

Consumers affected by this breach should receive an email or letter directly from AT&T regarding the incident. Email notifications began going out Saturday, an AT&T spokesperson said. confirmed.

What has AT&T done so far to help its customers?

Beyond notifying customers, AT&T said it has already reset passwords for current users. The company also said it would pay for credit monitoring services where applicable.

What is the best way to protect my personal information?

Start by freezing your credit reports at the three major agencies: Equifax, Experience and TransUnion. Then sign up for 24/7 credit monitoring and enable two-factor authentication on your AT&T account, said WalletHub CEO Odysseas Papadimitriou, a former senior director at Capital One.

If you receive notice of a breach, it is a good idea to change your password and monitor your account activity for suspicious transactions. The Federal Trade Commission offers free credit freezes and fraud alerts that consumers can set up to protect against identity theft and other malicious activity.

—The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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