My guess is that the recent TJX data breach will prove to be the largest on record. Several sources are already reporting data from this breach is being used to commit fraud.

The Boston Globe is reporting:

The Massachusetts Bankers Association said yesterday that several banks reported fraud linked to debit and credit card numbers pilfered from TJX’s computer system for unauthorized purchases made in Florida, Georgia, and Louisiana in the United States, and Hong Kong and Sweden overseas.

Middlesex Savings Bank is reissuing at least 20,000 Visa debit cards and had about a dozen suspected cases of fraudulent activity as far away as California and Japan, bank officials said. The bank said it costs at least $5 to replace a card, and many of the fraudulent charges were occurring at gas stations, discounters, grocery stores, and Internet merchants.

Boston Globe story, here.

This is likely the “tip of the iceberg” because a majority of the affected institutions haven’t reported in yet.

Meanwhile up North, thousands of Canadian citizens have been affected. CTV is reporting:

Fraudulent activity has been confirmed on the accounts of thousands of Canadian credit-card holders who had their information stolen during a security breach at the U.S. parent company of Winners and HomeSense.

CTV story, here.

My advice is that if you have shopped at a TJX company recently – watch your statements, carefully.

Especially, if you have a debit-card. Debit cards aren’t protected as well as credit cards. Tom Fragala (Truston Identity Theft Services) has a great post on his blog about this, here.

Tom developed this service from a victim’s standpoint and has helped many victims, both personally and with his well-known commentary on the subject.

If you are a victim – I can personally recommend his services – which don’t expose your personal information (again), also.

Here is my previous post on the TJX data breach:

TJX named as point-of-compromise in International …

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