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40 Million Credit Card Accounts Compromised at Target

Target Credit Card BreachTarget says approximately 40 million credit and debit card accounts may have been compromised by a data breach in its U.S. stores between Nov. 27 and Dec 15th. For now, it is not believed credit cards, used in Canadian Target stores, have been affected. Anyone who has used a credit card at Target recently is encouraged to review their statements to ensure there are no irregularities.

Cardholders who find fraudulent charges on their statements should call their card issuing bank immediately and reach out to Target at 866-852-8680. Cardholders will not be responsible for any fraudulent charges, as Mastercard and Visa have zero liability policies, whereby the bank will pay for all non-authorized charges.

Hackers were believed to have stolen names, card numbers, expiration dates and the three digit security codes on the back of credit cards, everything needed to make a non pin based purchase. Target has not revealed how the breach occurred, but has indicated that it has resolved the issue and it is now safe to shop in its more than 1,797 stores in the United States and 124 in Canada.

The height of holiday season is probably not the best timing for Target. It will be interesting to see how much this affects their holiday sales. Target is the latest in a list of high profile retailers who’ve had their credit card databases breached included 45M accounts at TJX and over 100M accounts at Sony.

“Target’s first priority is preserving the trust of our guests and we have moved swiftly to address this issue, so guests can shop with confidence. We regret any inconvenience this may cause,” Chairman, President and CEO Gregg Steinhafel said in a statement Thursday.