Mississippi Joins $18.5M Settlement with Target Corporation over 2013 Data Breach

May 23, 2017

Attorney General Jim Hood today announced that Mississippi has joined with 46 other states and the District of Columbia in an $18.5 million settlement with the Target Corporation to resolve the states’ investigation into the retail company’s 2013 data breach. The settlement represents the largest multistate data breach settlement achieved to date.

The states’ investigation, led by Connecticut and Illinois, found that, on or about November 12, 2013, cyber attackers accessed Target’s gateway server through credentials stolen from a third-party vendor. The credentials were then used to exploit weaknesses in Target’s system, which allowed the attackers to access a customer service database, install malware on the system and to capture data, including consumer data comprised of full names, telephone numbers, email addresses and mailing addresses, payment card numbers, expiration dates and CVV1 codes, and encrypted debit PINs.

The breach affected more than 41 million customer payment card accounts and contact information for more than 60 million customers.

“We are living in a cyber world, therefore we must take additional steps to ensure consumers are protected,” said General Hood. “Our consumer protection division, along with others across the country, is happy to see this case settled and to see Target implementing ways to protect their customers from future hacks.”

In addition to the monetary payment to the states, the settlement agreement requires Target to develop, implement and maintain a comprehensive information security program and to employ an executive or officer who is responsible for executing the plan. The company is required to hire an independent, qualified third-party to conduct a comprehensive security assessment.

The settlement further requires Target to maintain and support software on its network; to maintain appropriate encryption policies, particularly as pertains to cardholder and personal information data; to segment its cardholder data environment from the rest of its computer network; and to undertake steps to control access to its network, including implementing password rotation policies and two-factor authentication for certain accounts.

Mississippi will receive $227,714.21 from the settlement.

In addition to Mississippi, and led by the Connecticut and Illinois, other states participating in this settlement include Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and West Virginia and the District of Columbia.

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