The Best Bits From John Oliver’s Takedown Of The Equifax Scandal

Equifax, the credit bureau that ignored warnings and failed to update its software, leading to a data breach that exposed private information for half the U.S. adult population, stepped into the crosshairs of Last Week Tonight’s John Oliver on Sunday, adding a bit of levity to this otherwise dire ongoing scandal.

You can watch the whole 15-minute report below, but here are some of the highlights:

On the private information stolen during the breach
“The good news is, by ‘private information,’ they don’t mean your Google search history, so nobody knows about the time you searched for ‘Wario porn (real),’ or ‘World’s richest dogs looking for assistants,’ or ‘Can loneliness cause the farts?’”

On the value of the stolen information
“We’re the first generation to routinely send pictures of our junk over the internet, why should we give a shit about someone seeing our Social Security number? But you should know, criminals can do a lot more with that number than they can with a picture of your dick.”

On the Equifax execs who sold some $2 million in stock shortly before the breach was made public
“Selling stock before the public knows there’s a problem is one of those things that looks suspicious, whether or not you’re actually doing something wrong. It’s like walking into a petting zoo with a bib on. What exactly are you planning on messily devouring in there?”

On the claim by Equifax that its software wasn’t patched because of the inaction of one employee
“It is not ideal that a company guarding such valuable leaves something that important down to one person. It’s like finding out that Chase bank has a big red button labeled ‘Lose Everyone’s Money’ and the only thing stopping anyone from pushing it is Frank. I love Frank — I love the guy — but what if he has to pee?”

On the possibility that ID theft could haunt you for the rest of your life
“There is only one other thing that you have to constantly protect yourself from until your dead, and that’s fucking death!”

On the revelation that LifeLock’s heavily advertised credit monitoring service is just paying money to Equifax
“Which could only be more infuriating if you then found out that rest of it goes to Toys for Todds, a charity that purchases sex toys for grown men named Todd.”

Equifax has also been heavily criticized for its response to the breach, including a site that not only might serve up malware, but whose name is easily impersonated. In fact, as Oliver noted during the report, Equifax repeatedly tweeted out the URL of a fake site,, set up to mock the company’s easily spoofed site.

But it’s been a month since that happened, so surely Equifax would have proactively snatched up all the URLs that could reasonably be used by scammers, right? Nope.

Only a few days ago, says Oliver, his team purchased, which not only asks “How are we still able to do this? Why haven’t you learned anything?” but also has direct links for people who want to place credit freezes Equifax and the two other credit bureaus, Experian and TransUnion.

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