AHW reports online stores compromised by malware

AHW LLC in Illinois operates a number of online stores. In May, and as noted previously on this blog, they notified the New Hampshire Attorney General’s Office that Green Fun Store (greenfunstore.com) had apparently been comprised during the fourth quarter of 2012. They were alerted to the breach in March by their credit card vendor, Evalon, who reportedly was informed of the problem by Discover. Of 886 Discover card transactions during that period, over 100 of the card numbers were subsequently used fraudulently.  AHW attributed the problem to malware on the network that may have exfiltrated customers’ names, card numbers, expiration dates, and security codes.  At the same time, they notified the Maine Attorney General’s Office of the breach. In both letters to states, they noted that other AHW-operated stores, GreenPartStore and FarmFunStore , were also affected.

But there’s more to this breach, it seems.

Earlier this month, AHW notified New Hampshire that GreenPartStore had been compromised – but after they had upgraded the system in March to deal with the former breach at Green Fun Store and before they had completed all the upgrades they were doing to their system in response to the previously identified breach. For the period June 1 to June 23, Discover notified them in October that of 1,153 Discover card transactions, 191 of the card numbers were subsequently used in fraudulent transactions.

So it sounds like all three online stores were compromised by malware during the fourth quarter of 2012 and the compromise – or some elements of it – continued past June of this year, despite AHW’s initial attempts to contain the breach in March.

Customers were offered free credit monitoring services and AHW has invested in a number of improvements and upgrades to its system.


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