T-Mobile's big 2021 data breach bill comes in at a whopping $500 million total
Unlike arch-rivals Verizon and AT&T, T-Mobile has heroically resisted the undeniable pressure of the country's fast-rising inflation, keeping (almost) all wireless service rates unchanged and promising to continue to do so for the foreseeable future.
Of course, one of the key reasons why your monthly bill on T-Mo is not going up, at least for now, might be the historically bad press the "Un-carrier" has gotten over the last year or so for everything from declining customer service to layoffs upon layoffs and especially data breaches. So... many... data breaches!
the worst of said security snafus (in T-Mobile's entire history) is about to be put to rest, but only after the wireless service provider foots a massive bill of its own of no less than $500 million.By far
Technically, Magenta is looking at two different bills, one for a $350 million settlement fund meant to cover everything from attorneys' fees to actual customer compensation for the infamous data breach disclosed in August 2021 and one for an "incremental spend commitment of at least $150 million for data security and related technology" for 2022 and 2023.
T-Mo's laughably weak security last year, you can expect to get a (small) share of that $350 million in the mail... eventually, while said security will be beefed up with a "minimum" investment of $150 million on top of the carrier's "previously budgeted baseline."In other words, if you were in any way affected by
Seeing as how T-Mobile had already promised to pour a lot of money and resources into making sure these kinds of incidents won't happen again, it sounds like this two-part class action settlement will make quite a hole in the operator's budget this year and the next. For comparison, a big network outage back in 2020 that left millions of people without service (including emergency calls) for hours and hours only ended up costing Magenta $19.5 million in a settlement with the Federal Communications Commission (which is not the same thing, but still).
From an impacted consumer perspective, of course, $350 million is not that much cash, being likely to amount to an individual settlement of just a few bucks when taking all court expenses into consideration, as well as the number of people estimated to have had at least some form of personal data compromised in August 2021.
We're talking more than 70 million "current" (as of the date of the breach), former, and "prospective" T-Mobile customers, although in order to qualify for compensation, you will need to file a claim during a window of time and on a website yet to be announced.
All of the necessary details for every single one of you to get paid will only come out after this proposed deal is approved by a judge "as soon as December."