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Attention America: Your Credit Card Info Has Been Breached

posted on: Wed Oct 29 2014

By Rich Stuppy, COO, Kount

Have you used your credit card in 2014? If so, it’s probably been compromised and is in the hands of hackers.

Rich StuppyA review of the headlines of 2014 shows a tremendous number of credit card breaches. A breach of 50 million plus records from a home improvement center, 1.2 billion logins and passwords collected by hackers in Russia and several other notable breaches of retailers in national chains in the US.

A few announcements that are far more troubling have been under reported. For example, the Secret Service announced in August that more than 1000 additional business have been compromised by credit card stealing malware, in addition to the widely publicized breaches. To be clear, it is not referring to 1000 branches, stores or locations, it is referring to 1000+ businesses that could have tens of thousands of locations. One could presume that thousands of other businesses are infected but undetected.

What we know:

  • Compromises at Target resulted in 50 million plus stolen cards;
  • Compromises at Home Depot resulted in 56 million plus stolen cards;
  • And at least a thousand other businesses are infected.

The bottom line is anybody that has used a credit card at the point of sale in the last 12 months has likely been compromised.

The good news is that hackers are only selling a small percentage of cards that have been compromised and American consumers are protected from significant loss. The bad news is merchants will continue to take a beating and this much stolen data lays the foundation for potentially massive disruptions in commerce and payments.