A federal judge in Kentucky has given preliminary approval to a settlement between Countrywide Financial Corp., and millions of customers whose detailed financial information was exposed in a security breach. Under the terms of the settlement, Countrywide, now owned by Bank of America, will give free credit monitoring to up to 17 million people whose information was exposed during the security breach. That group includes anyone who obtained a mortgage and anyone who used Countrywide to service a mortgage prior to July 1, 2008. The settlement entitles a person to up to $50,000 in reimbursements from Countrywide per instance of identity theft, provided they actually lost something of value, were not reimbursed, and it’s more likely than not that the theft stemmed from Countrywide.
U.S. District Judge Thomas B. Russell of Paducah, who oversaw more than 35 lawsuits related to the security breach, granted class-action status to the suit and has already given preliminary approval to the settlement. A fairness hearing is scheduled for July in Louisville. Countrywide Financial had all of this financial information, including mortgage information, credit card and Social Security numbers and birth dates.
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