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June 09, 2011

  • News:  Citi; Breach Compromises 200K Accounts 

    Once again Americans must be concerned about the possibility of their credit card data being stolen from online hackers. Citigroup, Inc. the world's largest financial services network, announced today that hackers broke into their North American security system. The exact number of customers that were affected has not been released but it is known that the credit card data of more than 200,000 accounts were compromised. The financial giant said that in terms of numbers of cardholders affected, the breach has affected approximately 1 percent of its card portfolio. Citigroup has over 21 million credit cards in circulation. Bank officials discovered the breach while doing a routine check of the security system.

    Citi said that the criminals hacked into their online account service. It is suspected that the thieves were able to view the account holder's name, credit card number and contact information including email addresses of the more than 200,000 breached accounts. According to the bank's announcement, the cyber criminals did not have access to the account holders' Social Security Number (SSN) and birth dates, or the expiration dates and security codes of the compromised credit card accounts.

    In an email released by Sean Kevelighan, from Citi's North America Consumer Banking division, the bank will be notifying account holders of all the more than 200,000 credit card accounts that have been affected by the breach. He also noted that Citi has taken steps to secure its computer system and has implemented new procedures to prevent future security breaches from occurring again. Kevelighan said that the bank would not be disclosing any additional details relating to the hacking incident in order to protect its customers' security. Citigroup is a global financial services provider operating over 16,000 offices across 140 nations and is one of the "Big Four" banks in the United States along with Bank of American, JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo.

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