Many of us are still rattled by Target’s recent security breach, affecting 40 million credit and debit cards nationwide between November 27 and December 15, 2013. Now that these stolen cards have popped up everywhere on the black market, this isn’t just a national problem, it’s a global issue. Target CEO Gregg Steinhafel addressed the breach with a message on the corporate website, noting that the company has hired a third-party forensics firm to investigate the incident and insisting that, “there is no indication PIN numbers have been compromised.”
And, while it has certainly been a hardship for the credit card holders attacked, those targeted customers will be reimbursed. In circumstances like this one, it’s the merchants that take the heaviest financial blow, both in terms of fines and in lowered customer support. Aside from the time of year that this occurred and the swarms of people shopping for gifts in Target stores, the breach has been largely attributed to the rise in mobile shopping, and the decrease in shopper verification data—users buying items on their smartphones want to hit “buy” instantly without having to go through the lengthy security question process.
What’s the next step? According to an article from Forbes, some businesses have switched up the tactics and beefed up security by tapping into social media info as a source of verification data. Start-up company Trustev, for instance, has bulked up its verification service, utilizing around 80 sources including social media info (with the shopper’s permission).
If you suspect you were a victim of this or another credit card breach, report it to your financial institution and the Federal Trade Commission immediately.
Read CoCard’s tips about credit card security here.
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