Local financial and technology experts comment on Target hacks

Published: Jan 10 2014 10:40:06 PM EST
Local financial and technology experts comment on Target hac
BETHLEHEM Pa. -

There's more reason to be on alert if you've shopped at Target.

The store says its data breach announced last month affects millions more customers than first thought.

The personal information of as many as 70 million people was also stolen including phone numbers, email and mailing addresses.

"We are in an age right now, a very interesting age, and the age is that retail exuberance is exceeding the capacity of the security of the data," said Scott C. Hughes, chief information officer at Moravian College. "The problem with Target was swiping with the mag stripe, the black mag stripe on the back of everybody's credit cards, when you swipe through, they collect too much data."

Hughes said Target and customers have to make some changes.

"Target needs to abandon their mag stripe collection of data. As consumers, we need to better monitor our own banking transactions," he said.

Last month Target announced hackers stole credit and debit card data from 40 million shoppers who stopped at the store between November 27 and December 15 . Now we're learning they also stole the personal information of people who shopped there before then.

Be on the lookout for fake phone calls, emails, and letters asking for personal information.

"The first thing I'd be doing is looking at my statements, my credit card statements," said Certified Financial Planner Mike Ippoliti. "If you see any situation, is to immediately ask to have your account closed and request a new credit card."

Hughes said there are other things you can be doing to keep your information safe.

"You need to change your passwords, I recommend, on a quarterly basis," he said. "Pins are like passwords, every quarter you should change those up also."