News

Target: hackers breached data link used for billing

Target: hackers breached data link used for billing

TARGETED: Target, the third-largest U.S. retailer, has said the hackers stole about 40 million credit and debit card records, as well as personal information, such as addresses and phone numbers, belonging to about 70 million customers. Photo: Associated Press

By Mark Hosenball

WEDNESDAY (Reuters) – The Target Corp hackers managed to break into its payments network by first breaching a “data connection” between the U.S. retailer and its heating and ventilation systems contractor, a representative for the contractor said on Thursday.

The data connection was used by the vendor, Fazio Mechanical Services, to bill Target and exchange contract and project management information with the retailer, according to Dick Roberts, a public relations representative for Fazio.

Target, the third-largest U.S. retailer, has said the hackers stole about 40 million credit and debit card records, as well as personal information, such as addresses and phone numbers, belonging to about 70 million customers.

Target spokeswoman Molly Snyder declined on Thursday to comment on the company’s vendor relationships or to provide an update. “This is an active and ongoing investigation. I don’t have additional details to share at this time,” she said.

Last week, Target said the theft of a vendor’s credentials had helped cyber criminals pull off the massive data breach, which occurred during the holiday shopping season in late 2013. Target did not identify the vendor.

The U.S. Secret Service is investigating the Target attack, and said on Wednesday that its agents had visited the offices of Fazio Mechanical Services, based in Sharpsburg, Pennsylvania.

Fazio does not believe the hackers breached any data or data connections involving any of its other customers, Roberts said.

Ross E. Fazio, president and owner of Fazio Mechanical Services, said in a statement that his company was “fully cooperating” with Target and the Secret Service “to identify the possible cause of the breach.”

Fazio provides Target with heating, ventilation and air conditioning services, which are maintained physically. Fazio did not monitor these systems by remote control, Roberts said.

(Reporting by Mark Hosenball in Washington; Additional reporting by Phil Wahba in New York; Editing by Tiffany Wu, Toni Reinhold)

Recent Headlines

in Music

Randy Travis makes rare public appearance at fundraiser

Fresh
randy-travis

The country star is still recovering from a stroke he suffered last year.

in Music, Sports

Country music mourns Rob Bironas

Fresh
rob

Carrie Underwood, Dierks Bentley, and Charlie Daniels are among those sending condolences to fellow country singer Rachel Bradshaw after her husband was killed in a car crash.

in Entertainment, Sports

Shaq sings Bon Jovi song at crowded college bar

Fresh
shaq

WATCH: The basketball legend jumped on stage at an LSU-area bar to belt out a Bon Jovi classic.

in Entertainment

Rihanna, Kardashian among latest victims of photo hackers

Fresh
rihanna

Gabrielle Union, Meagan Good, and Hayden Panettiere are reportedly also among the latest celebrities to have shots posted online.

in Music, Entertainment

The Biebs filmed a music video with The Hoff

Fresh
hasselhoff

David Hasselhoff has been recruited by Justin Bieber and Cody Simpson to star in a new music video.