It seems the news is covering a new data breach nearly every week these days. Whether its the Anthem Blue Cross breach, the Target breach, or the most recent health insurance breach of Carefirst BlueCross BlueShield, companies seem to be having difficulty protecting the vast amounts of data they collect from their clients and customers and store online.
In an example of how far and wide data breaches can be, the winery of Patz and Hall has announced that personal financial information that was submitted to them has been subject to a breach. If you have purchased wine online from Patz and Hall, you may have received an email notification stating:
We are writing to inform you that our third-party ecommerce provider, Missing Link Networks, Inc. (MLN), was the subject of a recent data security incident. MLN notified us of this incident on May 27, 2015. You are receiving this letter because your credit card number on file may have been among the data compromised. It appears that list member names, credit card numbers, related payment addresses and dates of birth may have been compromised during the window of April 1, 2015 – April 30, 2015. Since MLN is widely used in the wine industry, you may be hearing from other wineries whose data was compromised in the same incident.
Essentially, on the back end of those online transactions, credit information submitted to Patz and Hall ended up with the third party service provider Missing Link Networks, Inc. And both companies apparently failed to follow the appropriate laws and industry standards necessary to protect vital financial information.
These types of breaches have become far too common, but fortunately consumer protection attorneys are now filing class action lawsuits to hold irresponsible companies accountable for their negligence, and for other statutory violations. Having your financial information in the hands of another can submit individuals to lengthy and costly attempts to secure their identity and protect themselves from identity theft.
At Paulson & Nace we believe in holding those who left the front door unlocked for a hacker to take advantage accountable to the consumers who now have to struggle with the real problem of identity security.