Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr at a press conference in October 2016. (DAVID BARNES / DAVID.BARNES@AJC.COM)
Photo: David Barnes
Photo: David Barnes

Georgia AG Chris Carr joins Equifax breach investigation

Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr is joining a coalition of state attorneys general in a probe of the massive data breach at Atlanta-based Equifax, which exposed sensitive personal information of 143 million Americans.

In a statement Friday, Carr’s office said the nature of the probe so far is civil, not criminal, and will examine “all facts and circumstances surrounding the breach, and its impact on Georgia consumers.”

Related: Equifax raiders have your data. Now what?

“Our Office is taking an active role, working with a large group of other states, to investigate the issues surrounding the data breach,” Carr said in a statement to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Our primary responsibility is to protect the consumers of Georgia, millions of whom, through no fault of their own, have had their personal information compromised.”

In all, 36 attorneys general are involved in the probe, a spokeswoman for Carr said. 

Johnny Isakson: ‘Equifax has a lot of explaining to do’

Equifax announced the breach last week and has taken fire from lawmakers and consumer watchdogs for their handling of the incident. Democrats in Congress have been particularly vocal, with some calling for new rules, and hearings before the House and Senate.

The Federal Trade Commission and FBI are also investigating. The breach also has spurred numerous class-action lawsuits on behalf of consumers. 

“As part of our duty to protect the interests of the people of Georgia, we are committed to determining exactly what happened and who are the cyber criminals targeting our companies and our personal data,” Carr said.

The Equifax Breach – How To Find Out If You are at Risk

In the days following Equifax’s announcement of hack, Carr’s office has issued alerts about how consumers can protect themselves and offering tips at www.identitytheft.ga.gov.

Related coverage

Senators demand answers from Equifax CEO about breach

Former Gov. Roy Barnes, others file Equifax data breach class action

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