Last month, the retail world was rocked by the news that Target has been the victim of an extended security breach during the busiest shopping time of the year. Business owners and consumers alike have been talking about the estimated 40 million customers’ names, credit and debit card numbers, expiration dates and security codes stolen.
Those conversations are about to heat up as additional information was released this week. Most interesting is that the number of consumers affected could actually be as high as 110 million people. This is because other data including mailing and email addresses, names and phone numbers were also hacked during the attack.
This came to light this week when Target disclosed the information. The higher number includes customers who only had partial information stolen.
“I know that it is frustrating for our guests to learn that this information was taken, and we are truly sorry they are having to endure this,” Gregg Steinhafel, the Target chief executive, said in a statement. “I also want our guests to know that understanding and sharing the facts related to this incident is important to me and the entire Target team.”
This affected not only the company’s reputation, but also its bottom line. Sales numbers fell 2.5 percent in the fourth quarter compared to the year before and stock prices rose from $1.20 to $1.30 per share, instead of the $1.60 that was predicted.
A security breach of any kind will cause consumers to think twice about shopping in any establishment. This is why having the right point of sale system is crucial.