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Breaking News: Target Data Keys Potentially Compromised

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Breaking News: Target Data Keys Potentially Compromised

Shares of Target (NYSE:TGT) were sent lower on Friday following even more headlines stemming from the holiday data breach. The nation’s second largest retailer confirmed on Friday that the “strongly encrypted pin data” was stolen as part of a recent data breach that affected millions.

The news of even more possible data risk did not fair well in the financial world. A number of banks issued more customer statements following the most recent update. Consumers are encouraged to check their statements on a daily basis to best protect themselves from account loss. Some financial institutions are requiring customers to claim a newly issued debit card to avoid potential problems down the road.

Still, Target officials said the “key” necessary to decrypt data is not within its system and could not have been taken during breach. The company would issue this statement to explain their view of the situation:

“We remain confident that PIN numbers are safe and secure. The PIN information was fully encrypted at the keypad, remained encrypted within our system, and remained encrypted when it was removed from our systems,”

Well, if the hackers were powerful enough to gain access to the data in the first place, wouldn’t it be safe to assume they are smart enough to have the key to access their newly acquired data. Should the attackers be successful in accessing the data, they would likely attempt to sell this data online on black market websites. Consequently, the buyers of the data would work to take advantage of bank account information.

At the time of this writing, shares of the company closed the week at $62.15. Shares slide for the majority of the day, down 0.53 percent on the close.

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