New York congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez thought she was doing her followers a favor but thinking never was her strong point.
When AOC heard that Equifax had made a deal with the Federal Trade Commission for $700 million, she had to go on twitter and start giving out unsolicited financial planning advice.
In 2017, Equifax was hacked and the personal information on more than 140 million Americans was compromised. As part of the settlement, those affected are to be paid for the inconvenience.
When Ocasio-Cortez noticed that one of the settlement options was a flat $125 check, her eyes went big and round as dinner plates and she reached for her phone.
“Everyone: go get your check from Equifax! $125 is a nice chunk of change. Get that money and pay off a bill, sock it away, take a day off, treat yourself, whatever you’d like == but cash that check! It only takes one minute. Do it here.”
Many of her fans blindly followed her advice before they realized they might have cut their own throats. Ocasio-Cortez should have read the fine print, the Washington Post pointed out.
“They are only going to pay out that amount until the requests hit a $31 million cap. After that, the payouts will be lowered and distributed on a proportional basis. The total pool for restitution is $380.5 million.”
So, not only might someone who followed the advice get a lot less than the promised $125, there was a better option on the table. One that AOC never even noticed. “Up to ten years of free credit monitoring.”
CNET explains that the services offered are “pretty extensive,” and would normally run between $1,200 and $3,600.
Those who listened to AOC weren’t happy to hear the update.
“Okay everyone UPDATE on Equifax: for most people the better deal is 10 years of free credit monitoring. There’s apparently a run on settlements so there’s anxiety people are going to get 16 cent checks. But if you choose 10 years of credit monitoring, Equifax *must* cover it.”
Okay everyone UPDATE on Equifax: for most people the better deal is 10 years of free credit monitoring.
There’s apparently a run on settlements so there’s anxiety people are going to get 16 cent checks. But if you choose 10 years of credit monitoring, Equifax *must* cover it.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) July 27, 2019
J. Russell wasn’t thrilled. “Too late I thought it was an either or choice so I chose cash instead of the monitoring so that means I get a 16 cent cash card great.”
PrePare2Crye writes, “gezzzz I already registered from your original post, now you cost me alot of money because like always facts are not important to you.”
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Another user adds, “Too late! Those of us that followed your first tweet, just got screwed out of 10 years of free monitoring by filing! Don’t put out info when you don’t know what you’re talking about. How many Americans just got screwed by you???”
Facts don’t mean nearly as much as looking good to AOC but this time, she looks like an idiot even to those she thinks she’s trying to help.