Ross-Simons Reports Breach in Security

Discussion
Apr 12, 2006
George Anderson

By George Anderson


Ross-Simons, a multi-channel retailer of jewelry, tabletop, gifts and collectibles, has reported an external breach in its security that may have given unauthorized parties access to consumers’ personal and financial information.


The company discovered the breach and notified commercial partners and authorities on April 4. It is now in the process of notifying all customers that may be affected.


“Customers who applied for a Ross-Simons private label credit card prior to April 4, 2006 are being notified about the security breach. The company will work with them to address any concerns or questions they have,” said Dante Bellini, Jr., spokesperson for Ross-Simons in a released statement.


The Providence, Rhode Island-based retailer, which mails over 60 million catalogs annually along with operating a web site and 15 stores, is no longer storing consumer applications for its private label credit cards.


The company also said it has “engaged an independent third party to conduct an immediate external audit of its security procedures.”


Customers of Ross-Simons with additional questions can call 1-888-838-0815 or go to http://www.ross-simons.com/content/rspa_customer_faq.htm.


Moderator’s Comment: Will Ross-Simons’ sales be hurt by the announcement consumers’ personal information may have
been accessed by unauthorized outside parties? How should Ross-Simons and other retailers faced with bad news of this type deal with it internally and publicly?

George Anderson – Moderator

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5 Comments on "Ross-Simons Reports Breach in Security"


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Thomas M. Chmielewski
Guest
Thomas M. Chmielewski
14 years 10 months ago

If Ross-Simons were the first to have a security breach, consumers would be more wary about shopping at Ross-Simons. However, so many personal information security breaches are being reported almost on a regular basis by banks, brokerage houses, credit card clearing houses and retailers, that unfortunately, this type of incident will fall into the background noise level of consumer concerns.

Warren Thayer
Guest
14 years 10 months ago

No real effect. This has happened to how many companies now? Experience has shown that this becomes the headline du jour, then it’s forgotten about.

Ryan Mathews
Guest
14 years 10 months ago

Warren is right. Sadly this is becoming business as usual. Can’t tell you how many bank ATM cards I’ve been re-issued because of a leak in somebody’s system. My money is on Warren; consumers will live with the problem rather than forgoing the convenience of credit and online shopping.

Mark Lilien
Guest
14 years 10 months ago

Ross-Simons did the right thing by notifying its customers promptly. Some will appreciate their honesty. Some will be angry. Unlike some retailers and financial service organizations, Ross-Simons has an unusually infrequent customer interaction cycle. In other words, people who buy Ross-Simons jewelry don’t buy it every week or every month. Many of their customers only buy from them once a year or even less often. So any error they make has fewer opportunities to be erased by repeated positive interactions. They might be able to overcome the negative event with some unique targeted promotions and appropriate communication to the customers involved.

Bernice Hurst
Guest
14 years 10 months ago

I’m in there with Warren and Ryan. These breaches of security are something that we all live with. Like so many other things, we just take a deep breath and hope that it won’t happen to us. Meanwhile, life goes on.

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