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Barnes & Noble hack may have exposed customers' email and purchase history

50 dollar nook
50 dollar nook (Image credit: Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Barnes & Noble's corporate systems were targeted by a cyber attack on October 10.
  • The company has said that the hackers may have accessed customers' email addresses, billing addresses, and purchase history.
  • Customer payment details, however, weren't compromised.

Bookseller Barnes and Noble fell victim to a cyber attack last week. The company has confirmed that the attack resulted in "unauthorized and unlawful access to certain Barnes & Noble corporate system."

The systems that were impacted contained data such as customers' email addresses, billing and shipping addresses, purchase history, as well as phone numbers. Barnes & Noble added that there is currently no evidence that suggests customers' personal information was accessed, but it isn't ruling out the possibility at this stage. Fortunately, however, Barnes and Noble says payment details of its customers weren't exposed. In a statement sent to The Register, the company said that all payment details stores in its systems are always encrypted and tokenized.

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On Sunday, owners of Barnes & Noble's Nook tablets started noticing that they were unable to download books they had already purchased or buy a new one. Cash registers at the bookseller's physical stores also stopped working temporarily due to the breach. While the company initially said it was merely facing a "network issue," it confirmed that its systems were attacked in an email sent to its customers earlier today.

Barnes & Noble hasn't been able to restore Nook services completely yet, but expects to get it "back to full operation" shortly.

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Babu Mohan
Babu Mohan