Want to sue Equifax? Chatbot can help.

September 14, 2017 by Marisa Kendall, The Mercury News

Are you one of the up to 143 million Americans who had their personal info hacked in the massive Equifax data breach?

If so, help might come from an unlikely place - a chatbot.

DoNotPay, the bot originally created to help people contest parking tickets, has been programmed to sue Equifax on behalf of people who had their data compromised in the breach.

Users who access the bot online will see a prompt that says "Automatically sue Equifax for $15,000." If they click, they will be taken to a page that lists New York, California, and other states where they can file a claim.

The bot asks users questions and helps them fill out the PDF form to file a suit in small claims court, VentureBeat reported. There's no need for a lawyer.

The bot was created by London native and Stanford University student Joshua Browder as a sort of robotic lawyer to help people navigate the legal system on their own. In January, NPR reported the bot helped people overturn more than 200,000 parking tickets in London, New York and Seattle.

Browder also has offered his bot's services to help refugees apply for asylum in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K., The Guardian reported.

Now he's turning his attention to the massive Equifax data breach - a hack said to have affected 44 percent of the U.S. population. The credit reporting firm said users' names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses and some diver's license numbers were accessed by criminals. And about 209,000 U.S. customers had their compromised.

More than 30 lawsuits already have been filed against Equifax in the U.S., Reuters reported.

But Browder hopes his bot will give customers additional recourse without having to hire a lawyer. "And," he told VentureBeat, "with enough success, bankrupt Equifax."

Explore further: Canadian class action suit launched against Equifax over data breach

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