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Schnucks breach causes bank to see fraud spike

6:07 PM, Mar 28, 2013   |    comments
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By Tracy Clemons

ST. LOUIS (KSDK) - The security breach being linked to Schnucks that has resulted in potentially thousands of compromised debit and credit cards is hitting banks hard.

NewsChannel 5 spoke to Ken Witbrodt, CEO of Montgomery Bank, Thursday and he says the number of fraud claims is normally less than 10 a month. This month more than 600 customers have filed claims.

He's one of those customers, and he believes it's mainly linked to the Schnucks breach.

But he's not blaming Schnucks.

"Normally when you see this kind of high volume of activity, the most likely thing that has happened is there's been a data breach. Meaning a hacker got into a database holding these card numbers from either some large retailer or sometimes it's from a credit card processing company," he said.

Witbrodt says Montgomery Bank has lost $60,000 to fraud claims in March. Usually it's about $1,000-$2,000.

Schnucks has not said how many customers had their credit and debit card information stolen or how it was stolen. It's not clear whether they even have that information.

Robin Bolebaum is another victim who believes her card information was stolen and used after she shopped at the store in Waterloo, Ill. That wasn't enough to make her stop shopping at Schnucks, but she's changing how she shops there.

"I'm not going to use my debit card or my credit card. I'm going to start getting some cash and checkbooks," she said.

Schnucks has brought in outside cyber forensics firm to help investigate this breach, and at this point it is not clear if that breach is with the store or with a third party like a credit card processing company.


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