Better Business Bureau: Identity Theft Concern Grows with Target Data Breach Update

January 10, 2014

Oakland, CA  January 10, 2014 – Target has announced that the number of individuals who may have been impacted by their holiday data breach is approximately 110 million compared to the original number of 40 million.

Additionally,the company reports that the hackers also were able to get more information than previously reported with the credit and debit card breach. Target spokespeople revealed that company’s database was also hacked and the names,mailing addresses, and email addresses of its customers were also stolen.

“With the theft of personal information such as email addresses the threat of Identity Theft becomes even greater” said Gene O'Neil, president and CEO of the Better Business Bureau serving the San Francisco Bay Area and Northern Coastal California. “Not only do those who may have been impacted by the original breach need to be concerned that their bank and credit card accounts may be compromised but they now must be prepared to protect their identities as well.”

In addition to monitoring your banking and credit card statements closely the Better Business Bureau recommends:

Be on your guard:

  • If you shopped at Target, expect to get fake phone calls, emails and letters in the mail, because there is a good chance scammers can contact you.
  • NEVER give out personal information or click on these links.
  • If a person calls and claims to be with your bank and says you’ve been affected by the hack, hang up.
  • Call bank number on credit card directly.
  • If you receive an email with someone who claims to be from Target, don’t click on links. Go to instead. This website gives all the correct information when handling the situation.

Contact people yourself:

  • Don’t wait for your bank to contact you, contact your bank yourself.
  • Let the bank know you’ve shopped at Target and are at risk. You might get a new card or PIN number.
  • Check your credit report online.
  • Check bank and credit card statements for charges you don’t recognize.

Sign up for fraud monitoring:

  • Target is offering one year of free credit monitoring and identity theft protection. Use this to your advantage.
  • Watch websites you use:
  • If criminals have your contact information they can pose as you on websites with your credit card information.
  • Contact the website directly if you have any concerns.

O'Neil adds, “Identity theft is still the fastest growing white collar crime. The BBB is here for consumers not only when they need help finding a trustworthy business, and also to help protect their identity”.



For more than 100 years, Better Business Bureau has been helping consumers find businesses, brands and charities they can trust. In 2012, consumers turned to BBB 124 million times for Business Reviews on more than 4.5 million companies and Charity Reports on 11,000 charities, all available for free at The BBB is an unbiased nonprofit organization that sets and upholds high standards for fair and honest business behavior. Businesses that earn BBB Accreditation contractually agree and adhere to the organization’s high standards of ethical business behavior. The BBB provides objective advice, free BBB Reliability ReportsTM on businesses and BBB Wise Giving ReportsTM on charities, and educational information on topics affecting marketplace trust. To further promote trust, your BBB also offers dispute resolution services for consumers and businesses. The first BBB was founded in 1912. Today, 113 BBBs serve communities across the U.S. and Canada. Please visit for more information.