OPERATIONS

Report: Federal hearings on Target breach possible

BY Dan Berthiaume

Washington, D.C. — Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) reportedly may seek federal hearings on the recent data breach at Target. According to the Associated Press, Menendez said in a press conference held outside a Jersey City, N.J. Target store that he has also requested the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to investigate whether it can levy fines against Target and whether laws protecting sensitive consumer data need to be strengthened.

Menendez reportedly said he does not think the FTC can currently assess any fines. The FTC did not fine T.J. Maxx for a similar data breach that occurred in 2006 and was resolved with a settlement agreement. The Department of Justice and Secret Service are both investigating the breach and at least three class-action lawsuits have been filed against the retailer, seeking more than $5 million in damages.

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MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

comScore: Retail provides six gaining November desktop categories

BY Dan Berthiaume

Reston, Va. — Several retail subcategories were among the top-gaining in November as Thanksgiving kicked off the holiday shopping season. According to comScore Media Metrix analysis of U.S., desktop activity in November 2013, the retail categories of toys, consumer electronics, jewelry/luxury goods/accessories, department stores, mall, and fragrances/cosmetics all were among the top 10 gaining desktop site categories in November.

Toys reported the highest percent change of any retail category (30%), and had 22.6 million unique visitors for the month. Department stores, had the highest number of unique visitors (85.1 million) and 21% growth. Toys had the second-highest percent change and department stores had the fifth-highest. E-cards led all categories with 65% growth and 16.9 million unique visitors.

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FINANCE

Report: Kroger renovates Ohio stores; plans to spend $330 million on renovations

BY Dan Berthiaume

Columbus, Ohio – Kroger reportedly recent spent $9 million on renovating a store in the Columbus, Ohio, area, and plans to spend another $9.4 million renovating three other stores in the area of its headquarters city. According to the Columbus Dispatch, this spending is part of a larger $330 million the retailer plans to spend on renovations by the end of the current fiscal year.

Kroger’s remodel to its store on Chambers Road in the Columbus suburb of Upper Arlington includes 21,000 sq. ft. of retail space, a refrigerated floral station, a meat-grilling station, an open-air seafood department and a Starbucks with seating.

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