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Target gift cards improperly activated over the holiday

January 3, 2014


Target in another pot of hot water

Just before the holidays, Target confirmed that 40 million customers’ credit and debit card information was stolen, including pin numbers, causing a whirlwind of attention for the mega retailer.

Now, Target has confirmed that some gift cards sold during the holiday shopping season were not properly activated by the retailer, and while they will not confirm the number of cards with the problem, they have said they will honor the faulty cards at Target service desks or through calling 800-544-2943.


Next steps for Target

“It’s another black eye that makes you question the internal operating procedures of Target,” Brian Sozzi, CEO of Belus Capital Advisors tells the AP. “Target needs to be doing everything perfectly. It can’t afford to lose any more confidence among its guests.”

Although this is not provoking fear the way the credit card breach did, it is problematic and frustrating for customers. Again, the company has responded quickly and has not denied the problems, but it has not made clear that it is working to investigate the security breach alongside the Secret Service and the Department of Justice, and have apologized for the gift card problems.

While they’ve handled their problems through their public relations arm, it remains unclear exactly how the gift cards were improperly activated, how their systems were so broadly hacked, and what is to be done to avoid the problem in the future.

When small businesses have this problem, it is time consuming but only impacts a select number of people – when the second largest discount retailer in America have these types of problems, a massive amount of people are impacted, and it is so much more than a blip on the radar.

Target’s problems are substantial, and it remains to be seen what their next steps will be.

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