Weak US card security made Target a juicy target

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Associated Press

Posted on December 22, 2013 at 7:00 PM

Updated Sunday, Dec 22 at 7:00 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — The U.S. is the juiciest target for hackers hunting credit card information. And experts say incidents like the recent data theft at Target's stores will get worse before they get better.

That's in part because U.S. credit and debit cards rely on an easy-to-copy magnetic strip on the back of the card, which stores account information.

In most other countries, people carry cards that use digital chips to hold account information.

The breach that exposed the credit card and debit card information of as many as 40 million Target customers is still under investigation. It's unclear how it occurred and what data, exactly, criminals have.

Although experts say no security system is fail-safe, there are l measures companies can take to protect against these attacks.

Thankfully, individual customers are not on the hook for fraudulent charges that result from security breaches. But such attacks do raise costs -- and, likely, fees for all customers.

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168-w-35-(Julie Walker, AP correspondent, with Jason Oxman, chief executive, Electronic Transactions Association)--The U.S. is a prime target for hackers hunting for credit card information, and experts say more incidents like the Target data breach should be expected. AP correspondent Julie Walker reports. (22 Dec 2013)

<<CUT *168 (12/22/13)££ 00:35

169-a-15-(Jason Oxman, chief executive, Electronic Transactions Association, in AP interview)-"used at Target"-Jason Oxman, the chief executive of the Electronic Transactions Association, says they don't yet know exactly what happened with Target. (22 Dec 2013)

<<CUT *169 (12/22/13)££ 00:15 "used at Target"

170-a-15-(Jason Oxman, chief executive, Electronic Transactions Association, in AP interview)-"liability for that"-Jason Oxman, the chief executive of the Electronic Transactions Association, says credit card users are protected if their information or card is stolen. (22 Dec 2013)

<<CUT *170 (12/22/13)££ 00:15 "liability for that"

172-a-07-(Jason Oxman, chief executive, Electronic Transactions Association, in AP interview)-"card for free"-Jason Oxman, the chief executive of the Electronic Transactions Association, says if a credit card company finds that your account was breached, they step in and you are not liable for charges that are incurred. (22 Dec 2013)

<<CUT *172 (12/22/13)££ 00:07 "card for free"

171-a-16-(Jason Oxman, chief executive, Electronic Transactions Association, in AP interview)-"network, uh, is fraudulent"-Jason Oxman, the chief executive of the Electronic Transactions Association, says credit card fraud makes up a tiny percentage of actual use. (22 Dec 2013)

<<CUT *171 (12/22/13)££ 00:16 "network, uh, is fraudulent"

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