Computer Crime Research Center


Hackers raided the company's computer system

Date: December 06, 2007
Source: CBS

Do you think twice when typing in your credit card number online, but have no problem handing over your plastic card at a store? Well actually, you may have it backward. Your personal information may be more secure in cyberspace than at the mall down the road.

That's because it's easier for dot-coms to protect the data. And most stores in America underestimate how vulnerable they are.

As correspondent Lesley Stahl reports, it's becoming a big problem. The retail industry got a wake-up call earlier this year, when TJX, the parent company of T.J. Maxx and Marshalls, disclosed it had suffered the worst high-tech heist in shopping history. Hackers raided the company's computer system, taking off with tens of millions of records. And what we have learned is: TJX could have prevented it.

"They collected too much personal information. They kept it too long. And finally, they didn't keep it according to appropriate security standards," says Canadian Privacy Commissioner Jennifer Stoddart, who led the investigation of the TJX theft for the Canadian government and the Province of Alberta, and released her findings before investigations in the U.S. are finished. TJX operates chains in both countries.
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