Giant retailer Target now says that the data breach it experienced between Thanksgiving and Christmas "puts up to 110 million people at risk," reports the Minneapolis StarTribune. Target is based in Minneapolis.
Target has previously made an admission that data was breached for about 40 million of its customers. The retailer now says that, in addition to that, "the thieves who accessed its data system from late November through mid-December also obtained personal information on 70 million customers," according to the StarTribune.
The exact number of total customers affected cannot be currently determined because Target says it is likely that there are some duplicate names on the two lists of breached data.
While the breach that affected the 40 million involved financial data, Target says the breach of the 70 million only involved "names, mailing addresses, phone numbers and e-mail addresses," according to the newspaper account.
The story adds: "The company also said it will close eight poorly performing stores in its 1,800-unit chain, the first time in recent memory it has shut down such a large number at once."
The article quotes Gregg Steinhafel, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Target, saying: "I know that it is frustrating for our guests to learn that this information was taken and we are truly sorry they are having to endure this. I also want our guests to know that understanding and sharing the facts related to this incident is important to me and the entire Target team."
The report adds: "In addition, the company revealed its own financial impact of the theft for the first time, saying that shoppers turned away from its stores after the incident was revealed on Dec. 19 and it expects lower sales and profits as a result. Target shares fell about 1.7 percent in first hour of trading on the New York Stock Exchange.
"Target said that customers would encounter ‘zero liability’ from any damage they suffer due to the theft of Target’s data. It offered to provide free credit monitoring and identity theft protection for customers for a year."