Just when you thought it was safe to start accepting credit cards again ... Home Depot confirmed yesterday that it’s investigating some “unusual activity” with regards to its customer data.
The news was first reported by Brian Krebs, a well-regarded independent security reporter, in his Sept. 2 blog post. Krebs said that “multiple banks say they're seeing evidence that Home Depot stores may be the source of a massive new batch of stolen credit and debit cards that went on sale this morning in the cybercrime underground.”
Krebs went on to say that this breach “may extend back to late April or early May 2014. If that's accurate — and if even a majority of Home Depot stores were compromised — this breach could be many times larger than Target, which had 40 million credit and debit cards stolen over a three-week period.”
In the blog post, Paula Drake, a Home Depot spokeswoman, confirmed the investigation.
“Protecting our customers’ information is something we take extremely seriously, and we're aggressively gathering facts at this point while working to protect customers,” Drake said. “If we confirm that a breach has occurred, we will make sure customers are notified immediately.”
This incident comes on the heels of another recent data breach confirmed by P.S. Chang's China Bistro last month. According to an Aug. 4 USA Today article, the chain said a security breach first reported in June may have led to the theft of customer data from credit and debit cards used at 33 of its restaurants. An intruder may have stolen card numbers and possibly names and expiration dates of customers’ credit and debit cards used over the course of about eight months. The chain hasn't determined that any specific cardholders’ data was stolen, however.
These incidents come after a rash of other similar data security breaches over the past year-and-a-half that have affected companies such as Target, Sally Beauty, Michaels, Neiman Marcus, SuperValu, UPS, and others.