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SECURITY EXPERT BELIEVES BANKS, NOT MERCHANTS, SHOULD 'OWN UP' TO RESPONSIBILITY TO PROTECT DATA

January 01, 2007

DATA: The data breach confirmed by TJX Cos. today is "quite serious" and looks to be organized, suggests Avivah Litan, an analyst at Gartner Group. She believes the payments industry needs to recognize that it may be more cost effective to change the payment system than ask 5 million retailers to comply with PCI data-security standards. "It's getting old to keep blaming retailers," she says. "The banking industry needs to own up to this problem and take responsibility directly instead of shifting it to retailers." Litan suggests using single-use PINs for each debit or credit card transaction as an alternative. That, she says, would make stolen card information useless. Liz Gasster, acting executive director and general counsel at the Cyber Security Industry Alliance, says that the more than 100 million payment cards that have been compromised through various data breaches since 2003 says legislation is needed to enforce comprehensive data security. She suggests the TJX incident could provide a catalyst for Congress to act on such legislation.
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