We don’t yet know who has the Equifax data or the entirety of the information they have.
We know what we can see when we pull a credit report. We see our addresses, our phone numbers, and a list of every line of credit associated with our name.
The OPM data is in the hands of the Chinese government. They probably won’t leak / sell it.
What if the Equifax data gets sold or dumped? We could be looking at a collapse in remote verification. How do you verify someone if the common answers to questions are entirely public? I don’t know how.
Traditional banks could require in-person visits rather than online setup / reset. That’ll work for a good number of people. The transient (college students, travelers, armed services) will all be out of luck if there bank is regional and they’re out of the region. Online financiers like PayPal will entirely be out of luck.
What about healthcare providers? How do they handle their customers? If I have questions about my health insurance, do I have to travel to a participating practice? That seems obtrusive.
Will we see authentication services spring up? Oh, you’d like to open a PayPal account? You’ll need to visit a USPS facility or AuthCo for an verification code to complete your signup / application.