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Visa and MasterCard issue alert

Visa and MasterCard issue alert

(2 April 2012 – United States) United States banks have been alerted by Visa and MasterCard after a major breach at a credit card processor. It could involve more than 10 million compromised card numbers.

The card associations stated that the breached credit card processor was compromised between 21 January, 2012 and 25 February, 2012.

The alerts also said that full Track 1 and Track 2 data was taken – meaning that the information could be used to counterfeit new cards.

Neither VISA nor MasterCard have said which US-based processor was the source of the breach. But affected banks are now starting to analyse transaction data on the compromised cards, in hopes of finding a common point of purchase.

Last Wednesday, PSCU — a provider of online financial services to credit unions — said it alerted 482 credit unions that appear to have had cards impacted by the breach, and that a total of 56,455 member VISA and MasterCard accounts were compromised.

PSCU said fraudulent activity had been detected on a relatively small number of those cards — 876 accounts — and that the activity was geographically dispersed.

Visa has provided payment card issuers with the affected account numbers so they can take steps to protect consumers through independent fraud monitoring and, if needed, reissuing cards.
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