In case you haven’t heard, Citigroup got hacked, and the hackers made off with approximately 200, 000 credit card numbers, cardholder names, and e-mail addresses. That’s the bad news. The good news is that they were unable to access Social Security numbers, birth dates, card security codes, or card expirations dates.
The other bit of good news is that Citi actually has 21 million North American credit card customers, so even if you have a card with them, it’s relatively unlikely that you were affected by this data breach. But what if you were affected? What next?
Well, if Citi’s response is anything like Chase’s response was when our credit card info was stolen when a merchant database got hacked awhile back, you’ll be hearing from them very soon. In our case, the Chase security division called us to check out our recent card activity and make sure there weren’t any fraudulent charges, and to let us know that our cards had been cancelled and that new ones were on the way.
As a side note, high profile security breaches like this are a prime opportunity for scammers to take advantage of unsuspecting customers. If you do get a call from someone that claims to work for Citi, beware and don’t give them any valuable information. In our experience dealing with Chase, they were careful not to ask for critical information – instead, they listed off charges and simply asked if we remembered making them.
In the mean time, I suggest that you spend a few minutes this weekend reviewing your account and looking for any suspicious activity. While there’s only about a 1% chance that your Citi card was compromised, it’s better to be safe than sorry. If you see any charges that you don’t recognize, call the number on the back of your credit card immediately.