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Every credit and debit card has been breached

I cannot believe, when we’re all absorbed by the inauguration of a new President in the world’s largest economy, that Heartland Payments Systems had the lack of heart to release news that malware on their systems had been recording every payment made through their network to an external source.

Heartland Payment Systems chose to release this news on 20th January to bury it, but it has not worked.  I spotted it, and I’m thousands of miles away from Heartland’s offices (thanks to the internet again!).

They won’t say how many people are affected, but it does seem to be that every credit card number using their payment system has been compromised.  As they’re used by over 250,000 businesses, with 40% of transactions from small
to mid-sized restaurants across America.  In other words, every American credit and debit card has probably been breached.

Robert Baldwin, CFO and President of Heartland, admits they have no idea how long the malicious software was in
place, how it got there or how many accounts have been compromised, but does admit that the
stolen data would include names, credit and debit card numbers and expiration dates.

“The transactional data crossing our platform, in terms of magnitude… is
about 100 million transactions a month”, he said.  “At this point, though,
we don’t know the magnitude of what was grabbed.”

Mr. Baldwin.  You were right.  A great day to release bad news.

And shame on you.

p.s. their website was down as I wrote this … I wonder why?

About Chris M Skinner

Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog, TheFinanser.com, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal’s Financial News. To learn more click here...

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