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How to get up to $358 in the Yahoo data breach settlement

  • People who had a Yahoo account at any time between January 1, 2012, and December 31, 2016, are eligible for the financial settlement.
  • The $117.5 million settlement will provide at least two years of free credit monitoring, or a cash payment for those who can verify they already have credit monitoring or identity protection.
  • Yet how much money consumers ultimately receive will depend on how many people file claims.

People who had a Yahoo account sometime between 2012 and 2016 may now file a claim as part of the portal's $117.5 million settlement for a series of data breaches in recent years that compromised users' personal information. 

Yahoo users may receive up to $358 in cash or free credit monitoring, according to the settlement website. However, that amount isn't guaranteed — it depends on how many people end up filing claims. 

That's similar to this year's Equifax breach settlement, which dangled a cash payment of $125 to those who had been affected by its massive privacy breach. But the $125 payment was based on a relatively small number of claims, and that amount could be reduced if more people signed up than expected.

Also like the Equifax settlement, Yahoo users must prove they already have credit monitoring or identity protection services to qualify for the cash payment. And you'll need to verify you'll keep the credit monitoring for at least a year. The cash payment, pegged at $100, could be significantly lower or up to $358, depending on how many people make claims.

"Nobody can know in advance how much the payment will be," the settlement site notes. 

Out-of-pocket costs 

The federal settlement stems from a number of data thefts at Yahoo between 2013 and 2014 that affected some 3 billion accounts. The money will be paid by Yahoo's current owner, Verizon, and Alibaba, a holdover from Yahoo's past.

The settlement also offers cash for people who can demonstrate out-of-pocket losses, such as any time required to deal with the impact of the breaches, and to cover payments from Yahoo users who paid for premium services like email and business services.

"If you spent time or money to address fraud or identity theft that you believe was caused by the data breaches, or to protect yourself from future harm, then you may make a claim for reimbursement," the Yahoo settlement site notes. "Each individual or small business user claim for out-of-pocket costs may not exceed $25,000."

The deadline to file for the Yahoo data breach is July 20, 2020.

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