Tuesday December 1st, 2015 11:29AM

Target: Customers' encrypted PINs were obtained

By The Associated Press
ATLANTA (AP) -- Target says customers' encrypted PIN data was removed during the massive data breach that occurred earlier this month.

Previously Target had said that encrypted data was stolen but stopped short of identifying it as PIN numbers. But the company issued a statement Friday saying that additional forensic work has shown that encrypted PIN data was removed along with customers' names and card numbers.

A PIN number is the personal identification code used to make secure transactions on a credit or debit card.

Data connected to about 40 million credit and debit cards used at Target were stolen between Nov. 27 and Dec. 15. Security experts say it's the second-largest theft of card accounts in U.S. history, surpassed only by a scam that began in 2005 involving retailer TJX Cos. In addition to the encrypted PIN numbers, the stolen data from Target included customer names, credit and debit card numbers, card expiration dates and the embedded code on the magnetic strip on back of the card.

Still, Target said it believes the PIN numbers are still safe because the information was strongly encrypted. The retailer said that PIN information is encrypted within its systems and can only be decrypted when it is received by its external, independent payment processor

"We remain confident that PIN numbers are safe and secure," said spokeswoman Molly Snyder in an emailed statement. "The PIN information was fully encrypted at the keypad, remained encrypted within our system, and remained encrypted when it was removed from our systems."

Minneapolis-based Target said it is still in the early stages of investigating the breach. It has been working with the Secret Service and the Department of Justice.
© Copyright 2015
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
S&P 500 index has its best year since 1997
The stock market closed out a record year with more all-time highs on Tuesday, giving U.S. indexes their biggest annual gains in almost two decades.
6:56PM ( 1 year ago )
Colorado readies for 'Green Wednesday' pot sales
Police were adding extra patrols around pot shops in eight Colorado towns that plan to allow recreational sales to anyone over 21 on Jan. 1.
1:52PM ( 1 year ago )
Kerry seeks framework for Mideast peace talks
A senior State Department official says Secretary of State John Kerry will try this week to get Israel and the Palestinians to agree on a framework for negotiating a final peace agreement, yet cautions against raising expectations for Kerry's latest round of shuttle diplomacy.
1:35PM ( 1 year ago )
U.S. News
Missing Ga. bank director arrested in Brunswick
A bank director accused of losing millions of investors' dollars before vanishing last year was arrested Tuesday during a traffic stop in a city in south Georgia.
7:00PM ( 1 year ago )
Amtrak to suspend some Crescent service in Jan., Feb.
Amtrak service will shut down in parts of the Southeast for several days in January and February for rail maintenance by Norfolk Southern Railway.
9:00AM ( 1 year ago )
Lung cancer scans urged for some smokers, not all
Certain current or former heavy smokers should start getting yearly scans for lung cancer to cut their risk of death from the nation's top cancer killer, government advisers said Monday - even as they stressed that the tests aren't for everyone.
7:26AM ( 1 year ago )
Business News
Sex offender held in Hall County for failing to register
A 47-year-old man was booked into the Hall County Jail Tuesday, being held without bond for allegedly failing to register as a sex offender, his second such arrest.
6:09PM ( 1 year ago )
Pharmacy robberies may involve same suspect
Oakwood Police Tuesday afternoon released details in a pharmacy robbery they're investigating, similar to one that happened in the Hall County Tuesday morning.
5:46PM ( 1 year ago )
Victim critical following apartment fire
A 41-year-old woman was in critical but stable condition Tuesday after being rescued from an apartment fire in Forsyth County late Monday afternoon.
3:16PM ( 1 year ago )
Local/State News
The Latest: Obama: Republicans will uphold climate deal once they realize how important it is
LE BOURGET, France (AP) — The latest news from the U.N. climate conference in Paris, which runs through Dec. 11. All times local:3:25 p.m.President Barack Obama says he believes his successor will uph...
9:30AM ( 1 hour ago )
Georgia group wants investigation of voters' data release
The League of Women Voters of Georgia wants Gov. Nathan Deal to investigate after personal information for Georgia's 6 million voters was released to news media and political parties.
By Associated Press
6:00AM ( 5 hours ago )
White House offers governors info on refugees in their states after Syrian migrants uproar
WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House is proposing to offer governors individualized reports about refugees in their states.White House chief of staff Denis McDonough says in letters to all 50 governors t...
9:08PM ( 14 hours ago )
Hall deputies arrest Nov. 21 chase suspect
A Gainesville man wanted for allegedly sideswiping a patrol car on Highway 365 a week ago was arrested over the weekend.
3:06PM ( 20 hours ago )
Man struck by car, killed on Athens Hwy. south of Gainesville
Charges are pending in a weekend accident that killed a pedestrian on Athens Highway.
1:34PM ( 21 hours ago )