Kmart becomes the latest retailer hit by data theft

Kmart is apologising to customers after becoming the latest in a slew of American retailers to suffer a data breach.

The discount store admitted that some customers’ payment cards had probably been compromised after discovering a breach late on Thursday.

Further investigation suggests that the company’s systems had been “infected with a form a malware that was undetectable by current anti-virus [wares]” earlier this month, the company said.

The retailer removed the malware but warned customers “certain debit and credit card numbers have been compromised”.

“Based on the forensic investigation to date, no personal information, no debit card PIN numbers, no email addresses and no social security numbers were obtained by those criminally responsible,” it added.

As investigations continue, Kmart said it will provide customers with free credit monitoring.

Kmart is only the latest US company to fall victim to such an attack. Only days ago, US fast-food chain Dairy Queen confirmed it had been hacked in August, taking 6 weeks to admit to the malware attach that harvested customer names, payment card numbers and expiration dates from 395 outlets in its chain.

Home Depot admitted last month that 56 million bank cards are at risk after staff processed payments via malware-infected till. Target, attacked in 2013, lost 40 million credit card numbers in a similar breach, and is still paying for the expense of the security failure.

K-Mart’s credit-monitoring offer extends to everyone who used a credit or debit card at Kmart stores in September through Oct. 9, the company said in an Oct. 10 statement.

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