Michaels stores confirms data breach

Created: 04/18/2014 5:11 PM
By: Stuart Dyson, KOB Eyewitness News 4

There’s a new reason to get nervous about your credit card. Michaels – the nation’s largest arts and crafts chain – says it has contained a data security breach that could have affected up to 3 million credit cards.

The chain has 3 stores in New Mexico – two in Albuquerque, one in Santa Fe – and more than a thousand across the country and in Canada. There could be thousands of New Mexico customers involved. The malware hackp-attack took place between May 8, 2013 and January 27 of this year.

Michaels Stores Inc. reports payment card numbers and expiration dates were compromised, but not names, addresses and PIN numbers. The company says actual ripoffs are “limited” so far, but it is offering affected customers free ID protection, credit monitoring, and fraud assistance for 12 months.

We found customers still flocking into the Albuquerque stores, but they seem to be well aware of the breach.

“Well, I’m pretty nervous about it,” Millie Meyer admitted. “I was going to go in and use my card right now, so I don’t know. I’ll either give them maybe a check, or I’m just going to buy one small item so I’ll probably give them cash or a check.”

“It’s kind of scary,” said Shannon Torres. “I think there are security breaches kid of everywhere. You just never know. The threat of the Internet and your cards and everything is just everywhere, so it’s kind of like a day-to-day thing.”

The company says the breach was slick and sophisticated – a malware hack their security people have never seen before. That might indicate that the Michaels cyber-attack is different from the ones that struck Target and Neiman-Marcus a few months ago.

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