Neiman Marcus confirmed that customer data was compromised following a security breach that occurred during mid-December. The news comes not long after Target, another major U.S. retailer, revealed that card payment data was accessed by hackers. The Neiman Marcus breach was first reported by Krebs on Security, the security blog that also first reported the breach at Target.
As of Jan. 13, 2014, there was no notice of the data breach on the retailer’s website.
“The security of our customers’ information is always a priority and we sincerely regret any inconvenience,” the company said on its Twitter account. “We are taking steps, where possible, to notify customers who cards we know were used fraudulently after purchasing at our stores.”
Neiman Marcus did not disclose how many customers were affected and what type of information was accessed. The company also did not share how the hackers obtained customer information.
Target’s data breach affected 40 million customers, whose debit and credit card numbers, card expiration dates, CVVs and PINs were compromised. The retailer also said that names, mailing address, phone numbers and email addresses of up to 70 million customers were stolen. Target is offering free credit-monitoring to affected customers.
It is unclear whether or not the data breaches at Neiman Marcus and Target are connected. According to Reuters, other less-known unnamed retailers are also being investigated for similar data breaches, citing undisclosed sources.
What affected customers should do
Depending on what type of customer data was stolen, the information could be used to make unauthorized purchases, steal identities and more.
Affected consumers may find some consolation in knowing that they are not liable for fraudulent purchases if they are reported to card issuers in a timely manner. With debit cards, there is a slight inconvenience when unauthorized purchases are paid with funds that cannot be reimbursed immediately — fewers funds are available to pay bills while card issuers work to fix the situation.
As always, consumers are advised to review their monthly card statements to identify any suspicious charges that do not belong to them. If an fraudulent purchase is found, it is best to call the card issuer for a new card number.