Update: Data breach at Splash car wash compromises thousands of bank accounts

Stephanie Simoni reports:

There’s a warning for people who use certain “Splash” Car Wash locations. The company is now saying as many as 30,000 customers may have had their bank accounts compromised due to a data breach at Splash.

Read more on WTNH.

So far, the company is aware of 1,400 cases, and the 30,000 is just an estimate. Yesterday, the company, which has 16 locations, posted a message on their website, linked from the homepage:

by Mark Curtis Splash Car Wash, June 26, 2014

Dear Splash Car Wash Patron,
I hope this message finds you well; we’d like to take a moment to discuss a serious issue with you. In mid-May, Splash Car Wash learned of a possible data security breach that resulted in the compromise of a portion of our patron’s credit card information only. This breach, sadly, is not unlike the data security breaches that have afflicted many in our industry and a large number of retailers across the world. Once we learned of the compromise, our team immediately communicated with banking institutions and federal investigators, in addition to conducting our own comprehensive investigation. Ultimately, we discovered there was a confirmed external breach and we quickly eliminated the malware causing the compromise. We express our utmost regret to those affected by this unfortunate and deliberate criminal act. The protection and privacy of confidential patron information is a matter we take with extreme seriousness. And, in our continued effort to be forthright and transparent, we’d like to share some additional details regarding the incident:

  • The breach occurred from February 28 to May 16, 2014 and has impacted approximately 1,400 of Splash Car Wash’s nearly 400,000 patrons thus far, at six Splash Car Wash locations in Connecticut, limited to Fairfield, Cos Cob, Shelton, Greenwich, Bridgeport and West Haven. We strongly urge all Splash patrons to check your credit card accounts to ensure there has been no additional fraudulent activity. If fraudulent activity is discovered, please contact your credit card company immediately.
  • Immediately following notice of the breach, Splash Car Wash engaged a third-party forensic investigator and sought guidance from banking institutions to quickly remediate the source of the breach.
  • In an effort to reinforce our existing robust and very technical security measures, credit card systems at all 16 Splash Car Wash locations have been replaced by credit card readers verified as safe and provided by banking institutions.
  • Splash Car Wash, in addition to others within our industry, is working in cooperation with the U.S. Secret Service and local law enforcement as part of a larger ongoing federal investigation. Due to the sensitivity of the investigation, we do not know and are unable to provide any further information regarding the criminal act, but will maintain open communication as information becomes available.

For customers that have unlimited plans with Splash: unlimited data was not affected by the breach, as all unlimited data is encrypted.

After thorough investigation and remediation of the source of the breach, we are confident in the current and ongoing safety and security of your confidential information. We will continue to monitor and protect our systems, while cooperating with federal investigators to determine the criminal(s) who installed malware to gain unauthorized outside access to credit card information.

For 33 years, Splash Car Wash has made it our mission to provide excellence in car care and automotive services and we will continue to honor this mission relentlessly. As a matter of personal security and practice, we encourage all patrons to be diligent in monitoring credit card and financial accounts for suspicious or fraudulent activity.

If you have any additional questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact the toll-free information line designated specifically to support our patrons during this difficult time at (800) 927-4489. Thank you for your patience; we are grateful for your continued patronage to Splash Car Wash.

Mark Curtis

Founder and Chief Executive Officer

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