Report: Target Ignored Security Alerts Amid Hack Attack

Security researchers have analyzed the Target breach backward and forward. Now, a new investigative report indicates that Target ignored the warnings signs of a data breach.

Bloomberg BusinessWeek recently launched an investigation into the malware that opened the door for cybercriminals to steal the personal information of about 70 million consumers at the end of last year. The result of the investigation: Target ignored alerts that its systems were possibly being hacked.

Target did nothing despite the fact that its $1.6 million malware detection tool from FireEye zeroed in on the potential hack and alerted the retailer's security team, according to BusinessWeek. To get this information, the publication's reporters said they spoke to more than 10 former Target employees who were in the know about the retailerEUs data security operation, as well as eight people with intimate knowledge of the attack and the fallout.

EUIf TargetEUs security team had followed up on the earliest FireEye alerts, it could have been right behind the hackers on their escape path. The malware had user names and passwords for the thievesEU staging servers embedded in the code, according to Jaime Blasco, a researcher for the security firm AlienVault Labs,EU BusinessWeek reporters noted. EUTarget security could have signed in to the servers themselves -- located in Ashburn, Va., Provo, Utah, and Los Angeles -- and seen the stolen data sitting there waiting for the hackersEU daily pickup. But by the time company investigators figured that out, the data were long gone.EU

Target Speaks Out

The publication's report elicited a statement from Target CEO Gregg Steinhafel. EUTarget was certified as meeting the standard for the payment card industry (PCI) in September 2013. Nonetheless, we suffered a data breach. As a result, we are conducting an end-to-end review of our people, processes and technology to understand our opportunities to...

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