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TJXMasterCard data breach settlement finalized
FRAMINGHAM, Mass. (5/16/08)--A previously announced settlement between TJX Cos.--the retailer that disclosed last year the largest data breach in history--and MasterCard International Inc. and its card issuers has been finalized, and the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) has been assisting credit unions in reviewing the settlement. Financial institutions representing 99.5% of eligible MasterCard accounts having claims from the data breach accepted the settlement's alternative recovery offer. The companies had said the final settlement would hinge on getting acceptance from at least 90% of the compromised accounts with claims by May 3. As it did with an earlier settlement in December between TJX and affected Visa account issuers, CUNA arranged a conference call with credit unions, leagues and MasterCard to review the settlement with them and responded to their questions and concerns about it. CUNA also followed provided additional information in News Now and , and staff continue to help credit unions with their subsequent questions, said Mary Dunn, CUNA senior vice president and associate general counsel. TJX funded $24 million (pre-tax) for alternative recovery payments. The costs already have been reflected in a charge that TJX took last year related to the breach. Each accepting issuer released and indemnified TJX and its acquiring banks regarding any claims by the issuers, their affiliate issuers (such as credit unions and banks) and their sponsoring issuers regarding the breach. These include any claims in the putative financial institution class actions in federal and state courts. In an earlier settlement with Visa U.S.A. and Visa card issuers, 95% of financial institutions eligible accepted the alternative recovery offer (News Now Dec. 21). Some credit unions and banks have opted not to take the settlements and have separate lawsuits pending (News Now March 26). TJX, the Framingham, Mass.-based operator of 2,595 stores including the T.J. Maxx and Marshalls discount retail stores, discovered the breach last year.
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