T-Mobile US hires someone other than bungling Experian to offer ID theft monitoring to hack victims

TransUnion hunts for crooks

First, Experian was hacked by criminals, and its sensitive records on 15 million people who applied for T-Mobile US phone contracts were stolen.

Then, bafflingly, Experian was hired by T-Mobile US to provide identity theft and credit monitoring for those caught up in the security breach.

Now the telco will let people pick someone else for fraud monitoring if they don't trust bungling Experian.

T-Mobile US executive response director Art Lucero told The Register on Friday that TransUnion's CSID service will offer ID theft and credit monitoring as an alternative to Experian.

The confirmation of a second monitor comes after peeps in the US were furious that T-Mob picked Experian's own ProtectMyID service to offer identity and credit abuse monitoring services for the same data Experian had just lost to hackers.

Experian is taking the blame for the security breach that led to records on millions of people falling into the wrong hands: people who applied for T-Mobile post-paid phone contracts have had their names, birth dates, addresses, social security numbers, and state ID numbers accessed by hackers.

T-Mobile US noted that the 15 million include not just its customers, but also those who may have applied but did not end up with a T-Mobile service plan.

Experian maintains that its ProtectMyID service will be able to effectively monitor people for fraudulent activity, and that the databases for its other consumer credit services were not compromised.

That did not sit well with some of T-Mobile US's customers, who feared that the company that just lost their personal details couldn't be trusted to also monitor that same data for misuse. The outcry from users prompted T-Mobile US CEO John Legere to promise that a second option was in the works.

Word on the second option arrived late Friday afternoon, when the company confirmed that CSID will provide services for those who want to snub Experian. Legere, meanwhile, has vowed to "institute a thorough review of our relationship with Experian" in the wake of the breach. ®


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