Are You an Ameritrade Customer? Ralph Lauren? LexisNexis? If So You Could Become a Victim of Identity Theft
0 (0)

The Internet Patrol - Patrolling the Internet for You
Rate this post!
 

Joining the ranks of Choicepoint and LexisNexis, Ameritrade and Ralph Lauren (Polo) have both acknowledged that private data belonging to their customers has been compromised, meaning that those customers could be at risk for identity theft. Also, LexisNexis this week announced that the breach of their customers’ personal data was greater than initially thought – by a factor of as much as 10-fold. Again, ten times as many LexisNexis customers at risk for identity theft.

Now granted, the Ameritrade data was actually “lost”, apparently by a shipping company, but the end result is the same – in the Ameritrade case the personal data belonging to nearly 200,000 Ameritrade customers is lost and unaccounted for. Potential identity theft fodder. Interestingly, despite acknowledging that the missing data tape contains the personal data of approximately 200,000 Ameritrade customers, Ameritrade spokesperson Donna Kush has indicated that they have determined that they only need to notify 175,000 of those 200,000 (I’m glad I’m not in that other 25,000!) The tape was one of four which were being shipped together, the entire package was lost and only three of the four data tapes were recovered. According to Kush “Ameritrade has every reason to believe the missing tape has been destroyed or is still somewhere in the shipper’s facility”. Am I the only one who would like to know the scenario under which that might be true? It seems that consumers might wish to avoid doing business with Ameritrade, or the as yet unnamed shipper – which should it be?


And the credit card information of thousands of Polo Ralph Lauren customers has been compromised. According to the Ralph Lauren spokesperson, “criminals may have obtained access to” the credit card information of nearly 180,000 holders of MasterCards and Visas who have shopped with an unnamed Polo Ralph Lauren retailer based in the United States.

And as previously reported by Aunty, LexisNexis was hacked last month, and now it turns out that they seriously underestimated the number of users whose data was compromised. Initially thought to be about 30,000, it now turns out that the personal data of about 310,000 users has been compromised.

Said New York Senator Charles Schumer, who just recently introduced a bill which would limit the sale of consumer’s consumer data, “When a company like LexisNexis so badly underestimates its own ID theft breaches, it is clear that things are totally out of hand.”

No Paywall Here!
The Internet Patrol is and always has been free. We don't hide our articles behind a paywall, or restrict the number of articles you can read in a month if you don't give us money. That said, it does cost us money to run the site, so if something you read here was helpful or useful, won't you consider donating something to help keep the Internet Patrol free?
Click for amount options
Other Amount:
What info did you find here today?:

 

Which says to Aunty that people need to start taking much more responsibility for the protection of their own personal data, like social security numbers and credit card information.

So, what are you doing?

No Paywall Here!
The Internet Patrol is and always has been free. We don't hide our articles behind a paywall, or restrict the number of articles you can read in a month if you don't give us money. That said, it does cost us money to run the site, so if something you read here was helpful or useful, won't you consider donating something to help keep the Internet Patrol free?
Click for amount options
Other Amount:
What info did you find here today?:

Rate this post!
 

7 thoughts on “Are You an Ameritrade Customer? Ralph Lauren? LexisNexis? If So You Could Become a Victim of Identity Theft
0 (0)

  1. Let me get this straight: You want to use modern technology to communicate stock trades over the internet, but you don’t expect that you’ll have to take some kind of control over your personal information to avoid fraud?

    If this is the case, I’m actually amazed that you’ve been able to stumble your way through life long enough to save enough money to invest on Ameritrade.

    Liability belongs with BOTH Ameritrade and the customer. If you refuse to give them your SSN, what happens? Are you unable to trade stocks? Nope!

    You can request a new identity number that is NOT your SSN that is specifically for your stock account, but this takes time and is inconvenient.

    Wah.

    Did any of you actually understand what the SS in SSN means? If you aren’t dealing with the Social Security office, then why did you give them your number?

    Me? I don’t care. I’m more likely to get hit by a car than hit by fraud due to Ameritrade losing proprietary data.

    Guess where identity fraud comes from. You know those funny white slips of paper that you give to merchant when you sign for dinner, beer, or diapers?

    Yeah, them.

  2. Why can’t our fingerprints be tied to new forms of identification that use strong encryption?

  3. For any educated person in this country, you should know that the “free credit report” has not been become full force throughout the US. And guess what, I live in that area that doesn’t receive the “free credit report”. Also, I am now going to be warned by email, phone, and written documentation throughout the entire one year by the company that Ameritrade contracted to monitor my credit – because they lost my backup tape. Be sure to tell all your fellow Ameritrade clients about this small piece of mind that they are entitled to have as a result of Ameritrade’s poor security.

  4. Amen, Larry (Cottingham)! Putting liability where it belongs is the only way to control this now. And I mean fines/damages with TEETH, not just a slap on the wrist. Corporate America has shown over time that loss of revenue is the only thing they respond to. So, let’s get ’em RESPONDING, shall we?

  5. Excuse me?? “people need to start taking much more responsibility for the protection of their own personal data, like social security numbers and credit card information.” How did this become my responsibility, when every credit card company, lender, bank, employer, broker and doctor’s office in the country demand your SS# before they will do business with you? To paraphrase an old song, “It’s too late baby!!” My SS# is out there, and it is being sold and passed around like the commodity it has become. As long as companies can make money by selling your personal data, this exposure to fraud will exist.

    The only way to curtail it is to make each and every business that has your SS# responsible to maintain your security, and make them pay damages when they fail to do so. Businesses will only respond when it hurts them financially if they don’t respond. The worst offenders are the big credit agencies. As the Equifax debacle clearly demonstrated, they only care about making a buck. Sell your personal data to a bunch of thieves? Heck, the thieves paid Equifax, why should they care?? Now if Equifax had to guarantee the credit rating of evey individual whose data they sold, and make restitution for fraud, then maybe they would exercise a little more care with your data.

    We can’t turn back the clock, and make sure everyone erases any and all of your personal data that they may have. That is the only way I could accept responsibility for my SS# now. Instead, we have to recognize the extent of the problem that currently exists, and it is enormous, and move forward with solutions that put the responsibility and the burden of the costs where they belong.

  6. You have got to be kidding me. Somebody made a mistake? Information was lost? Something isn’t perfect? Man, that never happens in any other industry. Wow, you are definitely not overreacting. Geez.

    First, these companies are REQUIRED BY LAW to store their data offsite in the case of emergency. The fact that this data was lost is not suprising nor should it be. Data, personal and otherwise, has been lost with regularity since man has learned how to write.

    Second, the bigger stink you and others make out of this, the more likely that companies will attempt to hide the problem. If all 200,000 Ameritrade customers got a “$119 credit agency report”, you can be sure that Ameritrade would never “lose data” ever again. As far as you knew.

    Finally, what is a $119 credit agency report? Credit reports are free, now, BY LAW. Here’s a better idea. Call TRW, Equifax, and Experian and have them put a note on your credit report stating that your data was stolen and to look out for fraud. Simple, useful, and free.

  7. I am one of the Ameritrade customers. They notified me via mail April 19th, almost two months after the tape disappeared. I called their facility and demanded that they pay for a Credit Reporting Agency for at least one year. I told them to notify me as soon as they “find” the missing tape. The company complied and I now am benefiting from a $119 Credit Agency report for 1 year. I also put them on notice that I hold them responsible for mishandling my personal data, and I am appalled at how they took so long to notify me when they have my phone number, email address, and home address.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.