Academy Mortgage Faces Disruptions; Employee and Borrower Data Compromised
Table of Contents
- By Steven
- Jan 17, 2024
Academy Mortgage Corporation (AMC) is a nationwide mortgage lender and home loan estate professional group. The organization has over 200 branches throughout the US and numerous loan, mortgage, and financing options. In March 2023, AMC officials discovered a breach within their system network; the threat actor accessed and deactivated some of their securities, putting employees and borrowers at risk for compromised data. According to the event’s published breach filings, a quarter of a million individuals may now have compromised data.
How Did the Attack Occur?
The consumer sample notices published by the Main Attorney General state that an unauthorized party accessed AMC’s network; soon after, the threat actor began disabling systems. Although officials discovered and stopped the attack, they could not stop the actor from accessing employee and borrower data. The public knowledge about the attack itself stops there, with no indication of how the assailant made the attack possible. However, the Maine breach filing suggests the event was an external data breach, pointing speculation to remote access. The assailants may have accessed the network through a side door or system vulnerability; alternatively, they may have used an SQL injection to jump into the network directly.
What Information Was Viewed or Stolen?
The threat actor of this event may have compromised the data of AMC employees and specific borrowers. Regarding borrowers, those at risk for data exposures are those who have applied for a mortgage or have a spouse or guardian who have applied. Current and former employees may have their full names, birthdays, and Social Security Numbers exposed. Meanwhile, applicants and borrowers may have their full names and Social Security Numbers compromised. Whether the victim was an employee or borrower from AMC, they are at an increased risk for data misuse from this breach.
How Did Academy Mortgage Corporation Admit to the Breach?
The Maine breach filing and the sample notices suggest the attack happened on or around March 21st, 2023. According to these sources, officials detected and stopped the attack on the same day, although they could not prevent the data from being exposed. Since then, officials have presumably worked to ascertain the event’s consequences, culminating in AMC sending notices to consumers and state institutions around December 20th.
What Will Become of the Stolen Information?
The assailants have potentially had the data of victims for ten months; in that time, they could have sold it on the dark web for quick cash. They could have used it for fraud, impersonating their victims to open or alter accounts under their name. They could have used it for phishing schemes, tricking organizations into revealing sensitive data like financial information. However, if the assailants choose to use the stolen data, victims still have time to protect themselves from the potential consequences.
What Should Affected Parties Do in the Aftermath of the Breach?
The Maine breach filing lists 284,443 victims of this breach; some individuals may have experienced account breaches when their data was compromised, while others may not see an impact for years. Regardless of whether the assailants have misused the data or saved it for later, victims can protect themselves. Account monitoring services alert account holders to all suspicious activity the moment it happens within an account; that allows victims to react immediately to misuse—mitigating damage and returning to normalcy faster than ever.