Woman says ID stolen 15 times after Equifax data breach

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SEATTLE, Wash. - A Washington woman says a company's data breach has turned her life upside down.

Last month, Equifax announced that a security breach released information of approximately 143 million customers including names, birth dates, Social Security numbers, addresses and possibly even driver’s license numbers.

Equifax said it discovered the breach on July 29, and believe the unauthorized access occurred from mid-May through July.

Following that initial announcement, the company released information earlier this month that an additional 2.5 million Americans may have been affected by the massive breach, bringing the total to 145.5 million people.

Now, one Washington woman is speaking out about the real effects of the breach.

“I don’t know if my information has been sold to the dark web or wherever this goes,” said Katie Van Fleet.

Van Fleet tells KCPQ that she has spent months trying to regain her stolen identity.

“I kept receiving letters from Kohl’s, from Macy’s, from Home Depot, from Old Navy saying, 'Thank you for your application,” she said. However, Van Fleet says she never applied for credit at any of those stores.

Instead, her attorney believes her personal information was stolen during the data breach at Equifax.

Catherine Fleming, Van Fleet's attorney, has filed a class-action lawsuit against Equifax, saying they were negligent when they lost the personal information of millions of Americans.

“I feel very helpless. I didn’t sign up to Equifax so I feel all of that stuff has been taken and I’m left here trying to sweep up the pieces and protect myself and protect my credit,” Van Fleet said.

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