Home improvement giant, Home Depot, has confirmed a credit card breach that could turn out to be the biggest security breach of any retailer’s data to date. Home Depot Inc. confirmed on Monday that its payment security systems were compromised while data experts warn that the damage done could rival Target’s breach last year.
The data theft is not likely to have affected online customers, rather in-store purchases made in various locations across the United States and in Canada. Home Depot also assured that there is no evidence that personal identification numbers, or PINs, were compromised.
KrebsOnSecurity, a security website, was the first to report the breach about a week ago. It stated the problem could affect purchases as far back as April and in as many as 2,200 stores. Brian Krebs, who founded and runs KrebsOnSecurity, estimated that the breach could even be larger than Target’s when hackers gained access to 40 million payment card numbers and 70 million other bits of customer data, compromising many and leaving them searching for help with credit cards and how to control the damage done by the security breach.
Retail breaches have shaken customer’s confidence at a time when privacy concerns have reached an all-time high. Pressure to improve security has been placed on retailers to protect customer data so they can feel safe that their personal information is secure when they’re out spending their hard earned cash. Home Depot is urging customers who have purchased from their stores to “review payment card statements carefully and call your bank or card issuer if you see any suspicious transactions.”
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