There has been one confirmed report of this data being uses by criminals.
"The only arrests believed tied to the case involve a gift card scam in which 10 people are suspected of buying data from the TJX hackers to purchase Wal-Mart gift cards in northern Florida. The group who aren't believed to have committed the TJX hack then used the cards to buy $1 million worth of electronics and jewelry at Wal-Mart's Sam's Club stores, according to Gainesville, Fla., police." (Source: ABC News)
If you have shopped at TJ Maxx or Marshalls or have returned items to either of these stores, read this news story. There has been customer information stolen and you may be in danger of identity theft.
Carefully check your credit card and bank statements if you have shopped at these stores. If you find any fraudulent charges, call the helpline at 866-484-6978 (set up by TJ Maxx). They also have set up a website here with recommended steps for people that they their information may have been stolen.
The retailer that owns the T.J. Maxx and Marshall's clothing chains said nearly 46 million customer card numbers were stolen from its computers over an 18-month period and said the total number of stolen cards may never be known.
TJX (Charts), which also operates other store chains in North America and the U.K., also said 455,000 customers who returned merchandise without receipts had their personal data stolen, including driver's license numbers. The retailer made the disclosures in an SEC filing late Wednesday.
TJX is being sued by affected cardholders in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico.
Spokeswoman Sherry Lang told CNN that 45.7 million card numbers had been stolen but noted that 75 percent of those cards were either expired or had their data masked.
LETTER FROM TJX'S PRESIDENT AND CEO
February 21, 2007
To Our Valued Customers:
As TJX's President and Chief Executive Officer, I want our customers to know how much I personally regret any difficulties you may experience as a result of the unauthorized intrusion into our computer systems. We are working with leading computer security firms to investigate the problem and enhance our computer security in order to protect our customers data. We are dedicating significant resources to evaluate the issue. Given the nature of the breach, the size and international scope of our operations and the complexity of the way credit card transactions are processed, the evaluation is, by necessity, taking time.
Since we learned of the probability of a breach in mid-December 2006, we have cooperated with law enforcement as well as with the banks and credit card companies that process our customer transactions. Further, we have established customer helplines in three countries and are making available a great deal of helpful information on our company websites.
We are committed to continue to address the situation and to provide periodic updates as we learn more. We have reported updated information in a press release which you will find below.
Additionally, I encourage you to access the information we are providing on this website to learn more about steps you can take to protect your credit and debit card information, or to contact our special customer helplines.
With the help of computer security experts, we have strengthened the security of our computer systems and we believe customers should feel safe shopping in our stores. We value the trust our customers place in us and again, I'd like you to know that we sincerely apologize for any difficulties you may be caused. Thank you for continuing to shop at our stores and for your years of loyal patronage.
President and Chief Executive Officer
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