|07 Apr 2011||#1|
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Epsilon data breach, who may be affected.
The list of customers affected by the Epsilon database breach continues to grow.
The breach, which took place last week but was announced over the weekend, compromised the e-mail addresses and some names belonging to the customers of many major U.S. companies that outsource their marketing and e-mail communications to Epsilon.
There is no official list of affected companies that's available, and a company spokesperson said Epsilon cannot release the names of its clients. Epsilon is in the midst of conducting an investigation of what led to the security breach.
The list of Epsilon clients whose customer e-mail addresses were stolen is not complete, and is likely to grow. But so far Target, Kroger, TiVo, US Bank, JPMorgan Chase, Capital One, Citi, Home Shopping Network, Ameriprise Financial, LL Bean Visa Card, McKinsey & Company, Ritz-Carlton Rewards, Marriott Rewards, New York & Company, Brookstone, Walgreens, The College Board, Disney Destinations, and Best Buy have notified their own customers about the breach. Hilton Hotels and Ethan Allen are also said to be affected.
How do you know if you're affected?
If you've ever given your e-mail address to any of the above companies, you probably are.
What will happen?
Most of the companies that are talking about it say the information that was stolen is limited to e-mail addresses and possibly names. Credit card companies and banks like Chase and Capital One say they do not believe any financial information was compromised.
But a bunch of e-mail addresses in the wrong hands means what's likely to result is a rise in phishing scams. "Phishing" is an attempt to use e-mail to try to get you to reveal more personal information about yourself. This can include usernames, passwords, Social Security numbers, or account numbers.
What should you do about it?
Do not open e-mail from someone you don't know. That's pretty simple. But you'll also need to be extra vigilant now that phishers may know specifically where you shop, what airline you fly, or where you bank. Look at the e-mail address--if it's purportedly from one of the companies above but ends in something other than .com, especially an international domain like .uk, that's a good indication it's a scam since most phishing attempts originate outside the U.S. Also be on the lookout for spelling errors in the e-mail address, URL, or body of the e-mail, or e-mails whose tone sounds particularly urgent.
If you do open the e-mail, don't click any links. A common phishing practice is to ask people to click a link to update their personal information.
Were you affected by Epsilon data breach? | Security - CNET News
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