Target agrees to pay Visa $67m over credit card security breach

Target, one of the largest retailers in the United States, has agreed to pay Visa close to $70m in a settlement regarding the 2013 data breach at the retail chain.

In 2013, Target suffered a high-profile data breach, with over 40 million credit card customers becoming victims of fraud during the ‘Black Friday’ holiday season.

The attack also might have resulted in the theft of personal information, such as email addresses and telephone numbers, from as many as 110 million people. A number of banks were affected including Visa and MasterCard.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Visa and Target have agreed a settlement, but have not confirmed any specific pay-out figure. Rumours suggest that Target will pay out the maximum amount that Visa requested in its regulations, which is $67m.

‘‘This settlement is a step in the right direction, but it still may not make credit unions whole,’’ commented Carrie Hunt, general counsel of the National Association of Federal Credit Unions, a trade group.

Since the attack, Visa has gone to many lengths to improve its card security, including moving towards chip-enabled credit cards, a feature that would significantly decrease the level of fraud suffered by Visa cardholders.

In April, Target agreed to pay MasterCard $19m in a similar settlement, but negotiations broke down.

The two firms are once again looking to reach a settlement, with industry insiders predicting that Target will have to pay a much larger settlement fee after Target paid the maximum amount to Visa.

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