FINANCE

Target: Encrypted PIN data stolen during credit card breach

BY Dan Berthiaume

Minneapolis — Target Corp. admitted Friday that “strongly encrypted PIN data” was removed during the hacking that compromised some 40 million credit- and debit-card accounts between Nov. 27 and Dec. 15. The retailer said it remains “confident” that customers’ PIN numbers are safe and secure.

“Target does not have access to nor does it store the encryption key within our system, the chain said in a release. “The PIN information is encrypted within Target’s systems and can only be decrypted when it is received by our external, independent payment processor. What this means is that the “key” necessary to decrypt that data has never existed within Target’s system and could not have been taken during this incident.”

Target is already facing an array lawsuits, mostly from customers accusing the company of failing to safeguard their information.

Senator Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) said Thursday he sent a letter to the head of the Federal Trade Commission requesting an update regarding the breach. Menendez, who is a member of the Senate Banking Committee, has also said he is looking into whether the FTC can fine firms when such data breaches occur.

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News

Report: Overstock.com to accept Bitcoin

BY Dan Berthiaume

New York — Online discount retailer Overstock.com plans to let shoppers pay with the digital currency Bitcoin starting in June, according to The New York Times.

The report said the retailer is reviewing several third-party firms that facilitate Bitcoin transactions, and that it hopes to have one place by mid-January.

If the plan is carried out, Overstock will be the most prominent retailer to accept Bitcoin as a form of payment.

In related news, Coinsetter Inc. a Bitcoin trading platform, filed to raise $1.5 million. The plans were disclosed in a filing on Friday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

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MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Study: Zappos is fastest holiday shipper

BY Dan Berthiaume

New York — Zappos took the top spot in a ranking of fastest holiday shippers according to a study by Kurt Salmon and StellaService. The study analyzed shipping times for orders placed on Cyber Monday from more than 50 retailers across a broad range of retail sectors, from big boxes to online-only players. It found that retailers in the top-five delivered multi-unit orders in an average of 2.9 days.

The top five companies for holiday shipping are the following:

  • Zappos: 1 day
  • Barneys: 3 days
  • Net-A-Porter: 3 days
  • Costco: 3.3 days
  • Neiman Marcus: 4.4 days

The study found that the top-five retailers delivered multi-unit Cyber Monday orders in an average of 2.9 days, which was less than half the average fulfillment time of 6.2 days achieved by retailers in the analysis.

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