No worries, local Target patrons say

Sales-minded shoppers still confident in store



Following a massive security breach last week that placed the credit and debt card information of millions of Target customers into the hands of cyber criminals, the store’s CEO, Gregg Steinhafel, apologized in a news release and notified patrons:

■ You have zero liability for any charges that you didn’t make.

■ No action is required by you unless you see charges you didn’t make.

■ Target will offer free credit monitoring to everyone who was impacted.

■ Your Social Security number was not compromised.

■ Be wary of call or email scams that may appear to offer protection but are really trying to get personal information from you.

A random, non-scientific survey of Grand Junction Target customers Monday showed nine out of 10 were more concerned about shopping discounts than the possible theft of their credit card information.

Between Nov. 27 and Dec. 15, roughly 40,000 point-of-sale systems hijacked by cyber criminals gathered debit and credit card information from about 40 million Target shoppers, the Wall Street Journal reported Dec. 19.

The security breach covered a period that included Black Friday, one of the nation’s busiest shopping days. This year, Black Friday took place Nov. 29.

A point-of-sale system is a computerized network operated by a main computer that is linked to several checkout terminals where customers swipe their payment cards.

Cyber criminals may have tinkered with the payment card devices to upload malware that allowed hackers to gather customers’ names, credit and debit card numbers, expiration dates and CVV codes when they swiped their cards, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Cyber criminals could use the stolen information to manufacture counterfeit payment cards, according to the National Fraud Information Center.

Personally identifiable information like Social Security numbers were not involved, a Target news release said.

“Stolen credit card information is generally used to make fraudulent charges, not for identity theft,” Target said.

Patrons at the Mesa Mall store hurried through automatic glass doors in a continuous stream Monday to take advantage of numerous sales announced by the store in the wake of the security breach.

All who agreed to comment said they knew about the breach. Only one, who declined to give her name, said she was concerned about the situation, but not enough to prevent her from carrying out two large, red-and-white bags filled with merchandise.

“I just think our world’s at a point where it happens to every organization or corporation,” said Raylene Beveridge of Grand Junction. “It’s just part of our culture now.”

Chase Bank notified customers like Amber McRoan of Grand Junction that her bankcard was canceled as a result of the Target security breach and that she would be limited to a total of $300 in daily withdrawals and purchases until her new card was activated.

“I feel protected, but at the same time, it’s kind of inconvenient because it’s holiday time,” McRoan said.

Robin Baker of Fruita said she used a debit card to make purchases at Target between Nov. 27 and Dec. 15 but was not overly concerned about any risk to her finances.

“There’s scams everywhere. You can use your debit card at a gas pump and somebody rips it off,” Baker said. “I watch my credit very closely and I’m set up for credit alerts. My bank also monitors if somebody’s using it a lot. They know my pattern,” Baker said.

Ben Hogue of Denver and his grandmother, Pat Hogue of Grand Junction, decided to shop at Target Monday despite the breach.

“I watch my account very carefully. It could happen, but you have to shop,” Pat Hogue said.

“I trust Target. I trust that they would make it right and I feel like they have,” Ben Hogue said. “After the situation happened, they’ve definitely made it right by their customers.”


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I DO NOT have to shop at target. I do NOT shop at Target. I haven’t since they forbade Salvation Army bell ringers. Karma? I think so.

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