According to THIS Yahoo Finance story, about 100 Michaels’ customers in several states have experienced theft from their debit card accounts.
HERE is a list of stores impacted by PIN pad tampering. You can check to see if your local store was affected.
HERE is what the Peas have to say.
Apparently, something was installed on the PIN pads themselves that allow your account number and PIN to be collected. This raises some interesting questions: Was it an inside job? If not, how were these machines – which sit right on the counter near the cashier – tampered with? Why were Michaels stores targeted?
I’m also wondering why, if 80 stores in 20 states have been affected, why only 100 customers have reported thefts? You would think that total would be higher. Maybe there are still unreported cases, whether the customer realizes the theft and hasn’t reported it … or the customer isn’t aware yet that they’ve been victimized.
I don’t know what the timeframe is for sure because the May 12, 2011 STATEMENT from Michaels says “February 8 through May 6″ but one of the Peas reported it going back as far as December 2010.
Speaking of statements from Michaels … some customers report receiving notification of the debit card problem via e-mail while others, even those who live near the affected stores, did not get any such e-mail. I’m on the e-mail list but didn’t get one … did you?
ETA 5/17/11: I found THIS in an old e-mail account I rarely check. Weird. It was sent there but not to the one where I currently get Michaels e-mails. Oh well.
If you would like more information on this issue, just Google “Michaels debit card” and tons of articles have been written about it. There was even a GMA segment on it but I can’t pull it up right now because my computer is being a total bitch :P
If anyone who’s reading this has been victimized, please leave a comment and tell us your story. And to all scrappers who shop at Michaels, please be careful. Maybe a personal “cash only” policy would be a good thing for the time being. And that’s better anyway since it’s harder for hubby to track your purchases that way HOLLAH!