Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Hannaford Bros. Confirms "Data Intrusion"

Add Hannaford supermarkets to the latest list of retailers victimized by hackers who have stolen credit card and debit card information of its customers. According to an article in the Boston Globe, Hannaford came forward yesterday to confirm that possibly 4.2 million credit and debit card numbers have been exposed and that this data intrusion is linked to 1,800 fraud cases already to date. According to the Hannaford website, the data that was stolen did not include names or addresses of card holders, but did include the card numbers and expiration dates. The data was illegally accessed from the Hannaford computer systems during transmission of card authorization. This data breach has affected customers from all Hannaford supermarkets, so if you shop at a Hannafords, it is strongly recommended that you review your credit card and bank statements. If you see anything out of the ordinary, immediately alert your financial institution of the problem. You then may need to place a fraud alert with one of the three major credit bureaus. If you have any questions for Hannaford supermarkets, call their customer care center at 866-591-4580.

Sometimes, no matter how safe you are with your personal information, you can still fall victim to identity theft. This story is a reminder that even if you are very protective with your personal financial information, you need to keep a close eye on credit card statements and bank statements. It is also a good idea to order a credit report for everyone in your family, including your children. The Federal Trade Commission website is an excellent resource on identity theft. There are videos about identity theft and information about what to do if you think you are a victim.


Ben Wright said...

Spectacular announcements about massive data security breaches do the public little good. The implication of these announcements is that some data (i.e., that which are the subject of the announcements) are more exposed than other data. As a practical matter that is false. All personally identifiable data are more or less exposed all the time. And successful exploitation of that data by an identity thief requires a lot of work and luck. Socially responsible data-holders should set a high threshold of proof before concluding that a "data security breach" worthy of announcement has occurred for any given unit of data. (Data-holders should of course consult their attorneys.)

BPS Internet Safety Blog said...

Mr. Wright, thank you very much for your insight. We do not mean to sensationalize the issue, but to inform our community that they should keep an eye on their financial information as approximately 2,000 Massachusetts shoppers have already been affected by the incident. Again, thank you for your expertise and please post information for us anytime!

aradana said...

This is a good idea.and good think.