Friday, September 08, 2006

Chase Throws Away Credit Information on 2.6 Million Circuit City Customers

With all recent concern about data breaches, here is a scary press release:

Chase Card Services today announced that it is notifying 2.6 million current and former Circuit City credit card account holders that computer tapes containing their personal information were mistakenly identified as trash and thrown out. Working closely with federal and local law enforcement, Chase conducted a thorough investigation and believes that the tapes, contained within a locked box, were compacted, destroyed and are buried in a landfill where the trash was taken.

Chase has been monitoring all of the affected accounts and has not identified any misuse of personal information connected to this occurrence. No other Chase accounts are involved in this incident.

Press release, here.

Chase isn't releasing the details of the "thorough investigation" that points to the tapes being "mistakenly" thrown away in a land fill. If you read closely, they "believe" the tapes were thrown away.

The press release also states that Chase is monitoring activity on the accounts and nothing has happened, but doesn't say exactly what personal information was compromised. If it was the standard information credit card companies keep, it could be used a lot of other places besides Circuit City.

In a lot of cases, identity theft victims have their information used to open numerous lines of credit.

To me, after reading this closely, this means that they aren't positive what happened to the tapes and we have 2.6 million potential identity theft victims running around.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has information on what to do if you are at risk, or have already become a victim, here.


Anonymous said...

Will it never end?

Maybe we should just give up and assign everybody a number and put it in a RFID chip on the back of the hand or on the forehead!

On second thought maybe not...

Anonymous said...

Here's a novel thought..why not let organizations earn tax credits for every customer they maintain secure data on.

That way it would appeal to their primary motivation (profits) to do a better job of securing and/or disposing of sensitive consumer data.

It certainly has merit to the alternative