Harbor Freight latest target of cyber attack on credit accounts

Harbor Freight latest target of cyber attack on credit accounts
Published: Aug. 2, 2013 at 1:19 AM CDT|Updated: Aug. 9, 2013 at 1:19 AM CDT
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An Evansville man learned that he was a victim of credit card fraud after shopping at a local hardware store.

Harbor Freight tools is issuing a warning to customers that they have been the victim of a cyber attack, and your credit card information could be in the hands of thieves.

Company officials tell 14 News two different stores noticed an issue in early July.

The company says they hired a security firm to investigate the problem and that's when they learned those suspicions were a reality.

Company President, Eric Smidt says the payment processing system used in it's stores nationwide had been hacked.

Officials say the security team was able to block the hackers, but at this time they are unable to identify how many credit and debit card account numbers have been compromised.

A company spokeswoman also tells us they haven't been able to identify how many of the company's 400 stores are affected and what time period the hackers had access to the system.

The only store in the Evansville area is located just off U.S. 41 near Morgan Avenue. The front door does have a sign on it that explains the issue to it's customers, but one Evansville man tells us he didn't know he was a victim until his card was declined.

He called the card company and was surprised with what they had to tell him.

"It was $50 each and there was two of those and when I called the card service they had said there was a third one that was tried to take out another $50, and that's when the security kicked in and cut off the card," says Ernie Timmons. "They should have been more forthcoming and then the banks and all the customers would have known in advance that something may come up and they could have done something before it happened."

If you think you may be a victim, you can call Harbor Freight.

Company officials tell us they will reimburse for fees not covered by their banks.

Harbor Freight says the issue has been resolved and it is safe to use your cards at the stores and online.

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