MOSCOW, November 7 (RIA Novosti) — American retail chain ‘Home Depot’ said that about 53 million customer e-mail addresses were stolen during a cyber attack last month, a source told RIA Novosti.
As previously reported by Huffington Post, attackers cracked the company’s payment system and likely obtained information about 56 million customer bank cards and passwords. However, the company stated that the files contained only email addresses and did not include any identification data, payment card details, or other important personal information.
"The Home Depot's investigation, cooperation with law enforcement and efforts to further enhance its security measures are ongoing," the company’s representatives claimed, adding, however, that customers should be cautious and change passwords to their e-mail accounts in order to not become subject to internet phishing, or other types of fraud.
Investigators stated that the attackers used an unusual custom-built malware that had previously been unknown. The computer virus — also called a "zero-day virus" – cannot be detected by traditional anti-virus programs, which are unable to quickly update their databases.
Home Depot underwent the cyber attack in September 2014. The company is the world's largest retailer of home appliances and building materials. In 2014, the company’s revenue reached 78.8 billion dollars.