Target is still dealing with the aftermath of the massive security branch the retail giant suffered during the 2013 holiday session. A computer security breach exposed the credit and debit card information of 40 million Target customers during a one-week period in November and December 2013.
The breach occurred during the peak holiday shopping period. Sensitive information for millions of customers exposes them to the possibility of identity theft and fraudulent transactions. As a result, customers have begun filing legal complaints seeking damages from Target through class-action lawsuits filed in states around the country.
In Target’s home state, Minnesota, they face a lawsuit, Alonso v. Target Corp., which brings into question Target’s failure to notify customers prior to the security breach being reported in the media. Target’s failure to notify their customers increases the time that they were vulnerable to fraudulent charges and inhibits customers’ ability to reconcile their accounts to track any potential problems.
Target scrambled to generate some efforts of damage control. They responded by assuring customers that they will not be responsible for fraudulent charges and will provide free credit reporting. Additionally, for one weekend victims from the security breach were granted 10% off all purchases at Target. Yet, the conciliatory gestures are not stopping the lawsuits.
Such a large-scale security breach into the debit and credit card sector has drawn the attention of the federal government. Target is also working with the United States Department of Justice to investigate the breach. The retail corporation itself isn’t under investigation but the incident itself is according to a statement from Target claiming the company was “actively partnering” with the federal authorities.