The IRS has awarded Equifax a $7.25 million dollar no-bid contract to “Verify taxpayer identity” and to combat fraud on the government’s Federal Business Opportunities database.
The contract was awarded Friday, just three weeks after Equifax announced what is arguably the worst leak of personal information, ever. According to the posting, Equifax will “Assist in ongoing identity verification and validations” for the IRS. The contract was a “Sole source order,” which means that the IRS determined that Equifax was the only company deemed capable of performing the contract.
The IRS said in the contract posting that, “This is considered a critical service that cannot lapse.” Equifax is the credit reporting bureau who exposed a breathtaking amount of highly sensitive data to hackers, including the full names, Social Security numbers, birthdates, addresses, and driver’s license numbers for more than 40 million Americans.
Richard Smith, the Equifax CEO at the time of the breach, apologized Tuesday for the hack while testifying before Congress. Due to the breadth of information leaked, American citizens could be combating the fallout from the Equifax breach for decades to come.