Ed Mierzwinski on the Target data breach

On his blog at U.S. PIRG, Ed Mierzwinski expounds on the Target data breach in a post entitled Target says "Oops, 70-110 million consumers hacked."  He points out that 70 to 100 million, "not the original 40 million customers, had their credit or debit card numbers hacked in December (or possibly at other times). Even worse, Target is admitting that the database stolen from the big-box retailer included a lot more than credit or debit card numbers and their associated security codes and expiration dates." Ed notes that federal law provides less protection to debit-card consumers than to credit-card consumers, but that, in either case, fraudulent use of your card can be a major headache even if it doesn't send you to the poorhouse. Ed warns consumers to be aware of phishing attacks based on information obtained by bad guys from Target. And he says consumers should not buy expensive credit-monitoring services, which he views as nearly worthless. Worth reading.

And while you're at it, take a look at our earlier post on this topic, which contains tips from the National Consumer Law Center, Consumer Action, and U.S. PIRG about how to limit damage from the Target data breach. That was posted back when we thought only 40 million customers were affected.

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