Consumers who provide confidential payment information to a large national chain store expect that the business will take all necessary precautions to protect its customers’ debit and credit records. If a company suffers a data breach it must face not only a loss of its customers’ trust, but also the possibility that any resulting identity theft cases may result in commercial litigation against the business.
In a recent company statement, Target admitted to a widespread security breach that resulted in the unauthorized release of payment information for about 40 million shoppers. The data leak affects customers who used their credit or debit cards to make purchases at Target retail stores in the United States between Nov. 27 and Dec. 15.
As a result of this statement, Nevada’s attorney general issued a warning, advising people who were impacted by this breach to review their credit reports and monitor their bank statements for any indications of identity theft or illegal use of their credit or debit cards. The attorney general also asked Nevadans to be on the lookout for other forms of scams such as phishing emails.
Whenever a data breach occurs that involves people’s credit and banking information, identity theft is a strong possibility. This type of crime can be exceptionally frustrating and mentally exhausting for its victims, but it is good to know that consumers whose stolen payment information is used for credit card fraud may have legal remedies. These consumers could have grounds for lawsuits against the company responsible for the breach, as well as the individuals who perpetrated the crime. Victims of this and other types of identity theft may wish to seek an attorney’s advice regarding possible commercial litigation claims.
Source: Las Vegas Sun, “Nevada AG warns Target shoppers to watch accounts,” Dec. 24, 2013