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Lawsuits over Heartland data breach folded into one

•  Ethics     updated  2009/10/05 15:34


Computerworld -  A lawsuit consolidating 16 separate class-action complaints brought by financial institutions against Heartland Payment Systems Inc. has been filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas.

The claims stem from the massive data breach disclosed by Princeton, N.J.-based Heartland in January. The complaints allege that the payment processor was negligent in its duty to protect card holder data.

The amended complaint includes for the first time several statements that Heartland is alleged to have made regarding the controls it had in place to protect credit and debit card data just prior to the breach. The fact that the company suffered the breach despite its claimed security measures shows that Heartland either negligently or deliberately misrepresented the facts, the lawsuit alleges.

The lawsuit seeks compensation from Heartland for the costs that the financial institutions say they have had to bear in notifying customers about the breach and in reissuing new cards. Among the financial institutions listed are the Pennsylvania State Employees Credit Union, Lone Star Bank of North America and Amalgamated Bank of New York.

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