Target Corporation confirmed on December 19, 2013 that approximately 40 million of their customers’ credit and debit card accounts may have been compromised. The unauthorized access occurred between November 27 and December 15, 2013, meaning anyone who shopped at Target and used a payment card during this time period may be at risk for fraud.
The ITRC recommends that anyone who used a payment card at a Target store between November 27 and December 15, 2013 to follow the steps below to minimize your chances of identity theft or fraud.
VICTIMS OF THE TARGET DATA BREACH SHOULD:
- Immediately review your debit and credit card statements for any suspicious activity.
- Contact your bank or financial institution and inform them of the incident. Discuss with them your options to protect your accounts and your identity. You may want to request a new card with a new card number and PIN number.
- Periodically monitor your credit reports for fraudulent activity by ordering your free credit reports on www.annualcreditreport.com.
- Place a 90 day fraud alert on your credit profile with the three major credit reporting agencies regardless of whether you detect any suspicious activity on your credit reports.
- Should you find any suspicious activity on your credit reports, request that the creditor and credit reporting agency delete the information from your credit profile.
- Once any fraudulent accounts have been deleted from your credit profile, considering placing a security freeze on your credit profile to reduce any risk of fraud. While the security freeze is in place, you will not be able to view your credit reports or open any new lines of credit; however, you can always unfreeze your credit profiles at any time.
- Should you need any assistance, at any time, please call the Identity Theft Resource Center at toll-free 888-400-5530, or visit our website www.idtheftcenter.org for more information on identity theft and what you can do to protect yourself.
It does not seem that any Social Security Numbers were breached in this incident; however, customers’ names, card numbers, expiration dates and security codes may have been accessed by the hackers. “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,” said Gregg Steinhafel, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Target. “We take this matter very seriously and are working with law enforcement to bring those responsible to justice.” Target has posted an online breach notice located at the top of their homepage providing details of the incident and what information was exposed.
We will be closely following the situation and will provide you with updates shortly.
If you found this information helpful, you may want to consider taking part in the Identity Theft Resource Center’s Anyone3 fundraising campaign. For more information or to donate please visit http://www.idtheftcenter.org/anyone-3.