FAQs Concerning Cyber Security


Can you explain what happened?

America’s Thrift Stores recently learned we were the victim of a data security breach that occurred through software used by one of our third-party service providers. Criminals from Eastern Europe broke into our system and installed malicious software (also known as “malware”) capable of stealing credit and debit card data from shoppers.

This breach may have affected card transactions between September 1 and September 27, 2015. If you used your credit or debit cards during this time at any America’s Thrift Stores location, certain information on your card may have been compromised.

Did this affect all stores?

While we don’t know for sure, we are acting as if it did with all of our measures.

Has the attack been stopped?

Yes. As soon as we learned of this issue, we began working with the U.S. Secret Service and Sikich, an independent forensic investigator accredited by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council. These experts analyzed the data breach, conducted a thorough forensic review and worked to both stop the attack and remove the malware.  Now, we are collaborating with them to even further improve security against future attacks.

What type of information is at risk?

The U.S. Secret Service tells us that only card numbers and expiration dates were stolen. We have no indication that customer names, addresses or email addresses were compromised.

How do I know if my payment card information is at risk? 

Check your credit or debit card statement. If you see any fraudulent activity or suspicious charges, please contact your card issuer immediately. This attack was limited to credit and debit card purchases made at America’s Thrift Stores between September 1 and September 27, 2015. But the fraudulent activity could have occurred anytime since then.

Is it safe to shop at America’s Thrift Stores?

Yes. Shoppers can feel confident using credit or debit cards at any of our store locations. The security of our customers is our highest priority and America’s Thrift Stores takes this issue very seriously. We have worked diligently with the U.S. Secret Service and an independent forensic investigator to stop the attack and implement additional security controls to prevent this from happening again.

What should I do if I used my credit or debit card at America’s Thrift Stores between September 1 and September 27, 2015? 

If you used your credit or debit card at America’s Thrift Stores during this period, review your credit and debit card statements carefully and check for any fraudulent activity.

What if I see something on my card that I didn’t buy?  What do I need to do?

If you see any fraudulent activity or suspicious charges, please contact your card issuer immediately. This attack was limited to credit and debit card purchases made at America’s Thrift Stores between September 1 and 27, 2015

Additionally, here is some advice from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau:

If you believe you are a victim of identity theft, you should contact one of the consumer reporting agencies listed below to place a fraud alert on your credit report. You only need to contact one of the three credit reporting companies to place an alert.

  • TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289; www.transunion.com; Fraud Victim Assistance Division, P.O. Box 6790, Fullerton, CA 92834-6790
  • Equifax: 1-800-525-6285; www.equifax.com; P.O. Box 740241, Atlanta, GA 30374-0241
  • Experian: 1-888-EXPERIAN (397-3742); www.experian.com; P.O. Box 9554, Allen, TX 75013

For more details on the steps to take if you are a victim of identity theft, visit the Federal Trade Commission’s Identity Theft website at http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/microsites/idtheft/.

What do I need to look out for?

You should look out for any suspicious activity or fraudulent charges on your credit or debit card especially between September 1 and 27, 2015, Any suspicious activity should be reported to card issuers right away.

Is there something I can do to protect myself from this happening again?

All shoppers should check their credit and debit card statements every month for any fraudulent charges. Any suspicious activity should be reported to your bank and card issuers right away.

How long into the future should I watch out for charges?

Every month, you should check your credit and debit card statements for any fraudulent charges whether from our stores or others. Any suspicious activity should be reported to card issuers right away.

Why couldn’t you stop it? Did you allow this to happen?

At America’s Thrift Stores, the trust and loyalty of our customers is our highest priority and we take this issue very seriously. Though we and our service providers maintain rigorous IT security standards, malware entered our network through the software of one of our service provider’s systems. This virus/malware, is one of several infecting retailers across North America.

As soon as we learned of the issue, we began working diligently with the U.S. Secret Service and an independent external forensic investigator to contain the incident, remove the malware and implement additional security controls to prevent this from happening again.

What’s being done to prevent this in the future?

To be clear the malware has already been removed and significant anti-virus measure installed. In addition we are currently collaborating with the U.S. Secret Service and Sikich, an independent forensic investigator accredited by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) to even further improve security against future attacks.

What info did they get?  Did they get personal info?

The forensic investigators believe the information stolen by attackers was credit and debit card numbers and expiration dates

Will the credit card company/bank remove the fraudulent charges?

If you suspect fraudulent activity on your credit or debit card, please notify your bank. Please note that the policies of most credit card companies state that customers have no liability for unauthorized charges if they report them in a timely manner.

What if I only paid with cash at America’s Thrift Stores?

If you only used cash or personal checks at America’s Thrift Stores, the attack did not affect you. The attack affected only credit and debit card transactions between September 1 and September 27, 2015.

Can I return what I bought at that time?

This is no way affects our normal return policies. They are still in effect. Please see our website for details.

Did this affect our ministry partners?

No it did not. They are not connected to our internal systems in any way so they remain unaffected.

Who can I contact with questions?

Please call our customer service center at 1-866-837-2071. Representatives are available to take calls Monday through Saturday from 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.


 

Click here to read the statement from our CEO.

 

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