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Local Banks Feel Impact Following Target Data Breach

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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) – The scope of the Target security breach is growing. Some customers are receiving emails from the retail giant letting them know that their name, mailing address, email and even phone numbers could have been taken as part of the intrusion.

According to Target, tens of millions of customers received emails this week letting them know that their information may have been compromised.

While other retailers have also announced similar infractions, they aren’t the only ones dealing with the aftermath.

Hampden Bank says so far they’ve had to reissue hundreds of debit cards.

“Just the cost to have a new card manufactured is about $18 and again, we do not have the ability to pass that on to anybody,” explains Robert Massey, Hampden Bank’s CFO and Treasurer.

But that’s not all. While customers aren’t liable for fraudulent charges, neither is Target. That also falls on the banks.

Massey adds, “I will tell you that last year, we had very close to $100,000 in losses.”

Those unwanted charges can have an unwanted affect on your credit score too.

Luckily, the scope of this breach is well known, and AIC Professor of Economics John Rogers told us that will help the consumer.

“I think everybody knows this happened, so that’s what the current damage control is all about, is trying to identify who are the people that have been affected and what’s the extent to which they’ve been affected,” Rogers says.

In the aftermath of the breach, Professor Rogers believes that Target will take about a 20 percent hit on their yearly earnings.

Banks will seek even more money from retailers as they incur the costs of replacing customer cards and reimbursing fraudulent charges.

In all, he estimates that the security breach will cost between $10 and $20 billion to clean up.

Target guests who shopped in their stores in the U.S. are being offered one year of credit monitoring for free. The services is being offered by Experian’s ProtectMyID, which also includes theft insurance where it is available.

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WGGB encourages readers to share their thoughts and engage in healthy dialogue about the issues. Comments containing personal attacks, profanity, offensive language or advertising will be removed. Please use the report comment function for any posts you feel should be reviewed. Thank you.
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