While Target and Neiman Marcus are still trying to recover from major store data breaches, it seems like more cases of store credit card reader breaches are heading our way. A cybercrime firm called IntelCrawler said it has discovered six more retail stores that experienced data breaches with the same malicious software that gathered customers’ information at Target, as reported by Reuters. The firm has not revealed the names of the stores attacked, however it said it has alerted law enforcement, security teams at numerous large banks and Visa, Inc. The firm also said the breached information included card data, yet it doesn’t know how many customers were affected.

Is this the start of a larger trend? As more news comes out about both the Target and Neiman Marcus breaches, it seems like consumers will need to be more careful when shopping.

Neiman Marcus breach lasted for 5 months

Slowly, more information is coming out about the Neiman Marcus breach, and the most recent details revealed that the breach went undetected from mid-July to December, as reported by The New York Times. The specific dates and the number of in-store customers affected by the breach have not been released, however the luxury retailer did issue an apology and revealed some details about the information breached.

What information was breached at Neiman Marcus stores?

Neiman Marcus said customers’ debit and credit card information were revealed in the breach, yet it believes customers’ social security numbers or birth dates were not exposed. The company did not publicly announce how many customers or cards were affected, yet it said its stores do not collect PINs, which means the breach did not reveal that information.

How will I know if I fell victim to any of these breaches?

Target has sent email alerts to most of its customers who possibly had information exposed in the breach. On the other hand, Neiman Marcus has not revealed a lot of details about its breach. Since these breaches seem to have been a holiday trend, there are three actions that you should immediately take to protect yourself and keep your financial information safe.

1. Monitor your statements: It’s essential that you comb through your bank statements from last year to make sure there are no unfamiliar charges, and if you spot any charge that is unfamiliar, you should call your bank immediately to inquire about the charge and report it as possible fraud. It’s best that you continue to carefully monitor your statements each month to make sure there is no potential fraudulent activity, regardless of whether your account had fraudulent charges or not. Continuing to monitor your statements will help you catch and stop any potential fraud that you may fall victim to in the future.

2. Consider requesting a new debit or credit card: This is an action that you should absolutely take if you find any fraudulent activity on your bank statement and something you may want to consider — if there’s no fraudulent activity on your statement — to protect your bank accounts from any of the breaches. It’s important to note that some banks will not issue you a new debit or credit card until the account has confirmed fraud, however you can always call your bank to inquire about the bank’s card reissue policy.

3. Sign up for identity theft protection: The final action that you can take to protect yourself from identity theft is to consider signing up for an identity theft protection service. These services monitor your personal information on the Internet black market and public records to verify that your information is not being misused, traded or sold to identity thieves. On top of the active identity monitoring, these services also offer three-bureau credit report monitoring to make sure no one is opening new lines of credit or making changes to your credit accounts in your name. And the best part is that most of these services offer free trials which allow you to test the service prior to making a financial commitment. Visit our identity theft protection compare chart to see which service will best fit your needs.