Customers left scrambling after Target security breach - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Customers left scrambling after Target security breach


As Target says millions more of its holiday shoppers may have had their credit card numbers stolen, impacted Kansas City area residents are left scrambling to deal with the fallout.

Target said Friday that the breach was even more extensive and more personal information apparently stolen by hackers than was disclosed last month.

Some Target customers said their banks proactively reacted to fraudulent charges. Others like Danielle Ammon have been left frustrated and have seen their checking accounts drained. Some customers voiced their concerns and questions on KCTV5's Facebook page on Friday.

Ammon went Christmas shopping and used a debit card on Dec. 12 at Target. Days later, she was warned by her bank that her account was in jeopardy because of the security breach, and she would be getting a new card.

"I didn't have hardly any money in the account at that time and I didn't think it could happen to me," Ammon said.

But it did. Her card's number was used in Turkey, Netflix charges were racked up and computer games were bought.

Altogether, her account was drained $700 despite her best efforts to stay on top of the situation. She's filed paperwork with her bank to have the charges investigated, but it could take up to 125 days for the investigation and a refund to be processed.

Ammon is now having to borrow money to pay bills because her bank didn't stop charges from Istanbul even though they knew her account was at risk.

"This infuriated me. Target was breached, not my fault," she said. "For a person who is single income, lives paycheck to paycheck, has no savings account and no credit cards to save them, this is a devastating situation and 125 days is NOT an acceptable time frame. This money needs to be instantly reimbursed by Target then they can be the ones to wait on an investigation to be done, not me."

She hopes to have the nightmare over and no more problems arise with her account. She said she will take advantage of the free credit monitoring that Target plans to offer customers in the coming weeks.

"I will wait for that to be available," she said. "And hope for the best."

Target revealed Friday that hackers have access to names, mailing addresses, phone numbers, emails and other personal information that could allow identities to be stolen.

Jada Castanon of Apprisen Credit Counseling said consumers must be protective of their personal information and remain vigilant. She said consumers at risk must watch for emails, telephone calls or letters trying to trick them into giving up personal information even if they claim to be someone you did business with previously.

"If you have been a victim of identity theft or you feel you are going to be a victim, you might want to put a freeze on your credit reports, which means no one can open up credit in your name without them verifying that it is you."

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