Arizona-based mortgage company hacked

PHOENIX --

Thousands of Arizona homeowners could be at risk for identity theft, after a major mortgage company got hacked.

The Lending Company, based in north Phoenix, said the security breach was akin to getting your Facebook account hacked. If that happens, all of your Facebook friends simply receive annoying messages. However, when your mortgage application is hacked, everything about your finances is wide open.

Tim Ward contacted CBS 5 after receiving a disturbing letter from The Lending Company, alerting him to the security breach.

"The letter said that they had their system hacked, and my information was 'out there' somewhere," Ward said.

The Lending Company does business in 12 states, including Arizona. The company admitted its secure database was breached on May 4, potentially putting at risk thousands of its customers.

The Lending Company isn't alone -- other major corporations have confirmed a security breach, such as Sony, Michaels, Best Buy and Walgreens. They are joined by financial institutions such as JPMorgan Chase, Capital One, Citi and Ameriprise Financial.

The Lending Company officials refused to comment, saying only that so far, none of its customers or employees has reported identity theft.

That's not good enough for Ward, who is dissatisfied with The Lending Company's recommendation to put a fraud freeze with the credit bureau. He said he was unsuccessful with his attempts, getting bogged down in phone trees.

"I'm very cautious, and everything gets shredded that gets put in the garbage, but there's only so much you can do if you've got a mortgage company that apparently isn't very secure," Ward said.

The company did file a report with Phoenix police. It said it has an idea who the culprit is behind the breach.

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