Data breach may hit 245,000 Wonga customers
Around 245,000 former and existing Wonga customers may have had their data stolen, the payday lender has warned.
It says “there may have been illegal and unauthorised access to the personal data of some of our customers”, adding that it’s “urgently working to establish further details and contacting those who we know have been impacted”.
Struggling with unaffordable payday loans? You may be due a refund
Wonga says stolen information may include one or more of the following:
- E-mail address
- Home address
- Phone number
- The last four digits of your card number (but not the whole number)
- Your bank account number and sort code.
However, the controversial lender doesn’t believe account passwords have been compromised.
It says it’s notified the police, the Information Commissioners Office and the Financial Conduct Authority of the breach.
A spokesperson for Wonga says: “We sincerely apologise for the inconvenience caused."
I’m affected. What should I do?
Affected customers will be contacted by Wonga.
Its advice to these customers is to alert their bank or credit card provider to look out for any suspicious activity, and to be extra vigilant themselves – so check your financial statements and credit file for unusual activity, and beware of anyone who calls you asking for personal information out of the blue.
While Wonga believes its online accounts “should be secure”, it says concerned customers can change their account password.
Worried customers can call Wonga on 0207 138 8330. It has also set up a help page on its website.
Short-term cash loans designed to be borrowed mid-way through the month to tide the borrower over until they next get paid, whereupon the loan is settled. Generally used by people with bad credit ratings and/or no access to short-term credit such as an overdraft or credit card. Like logbook loans, this type of borrowing is hugely expensive: the average APR on payday loans is well over 1,000% and in some instances can be considerably more.
Used by the holder to buy goods and services, credit cards also have a monthly or annual spending limit, which may be raised or lowered depending on the creditworthiness of the cardholder. But unlike charge cards, borrowers aren’t forced to pay the balance off in full every month and, as long as they make a stated minimum payment, can carry a balance from one month to the next, generating compound interest. As the issuing company is effectively giving you a short-term loan, most credit cards have variable and relatively high interest rates. Allowing the interest to compound for too long may result in dire financial straits.