A major data breach that recently attacked millions of customers at Home Depot hardware stores across the country has created some hefty work for a local Nevada financial institution.
In the past week, One Nevada Credit Union has issued more than 12,000 new debit cards to customers affected by the breach, which, by some estimates, may have touched more than 40 million payment cards.
“We’ve had to reissue quite a few,” said George Barnes, senior vice president of marketing. “It could potentially grow larger.”
Every day the credit union gets a call from Visa Inc. with an update on the number of customers affected by the breach, which took place from April 11 to Sept. 7 of this year — a four-month period that included the store’s busiest summer months.
The attack prompted two senators — Edward Markey, D-Mass., and Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn. — to ask the federal government to open an investigation into the data breach, which targeted the store’s payment-card processing system. The request followed the heels of five independent state investigations opened after the attack. Home Depot has also reported another investigation, headed by a handful of leading IT companies and local law enforcement agencies.
Like many credit unions One Nevada uses a fraud prevention system that monitors customers’ accounts for suspicious activity. If there’s any indication of fraud, the financial institution contacts the customer via telephone or email to verify the questionable activity.
Credit union customers carry no liability for any fraudulent activity — as long as any fraud is reported in a timely fashion. But the institution’s officials encourage customers to monitor transactions on their credit and debit cards. If there’s any activity that seems out of place, they should call the credit union.
Separately, Albertsons reported a breach that occurred between June 22 and July 17. The grocery chain has stores in Southern California, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, Nevada, Oregon, Washington and Southern Utah
“There hasn’t been any noticeable fraud from the Albertsons breach,” Barnes said.
While the credit union has not fielded any calls from One Nevada customers who fell victim to fraud after shopping at Albertsons, Barnes encourages people affected by the breach to immediately call their branch.
The Associated Press contributed to this report. Contact reporter Ed Komenda at email@example.com or 702-383-0270. Follow him on Twitter @ejkomenda.