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Security Alert – American Express Data Breach

A recent security breach is proof positive that however diligent you are (as an individual or a company) if you engage in the global marketplace, YOUR security is at the mercy of every vendor and partner you work with. So it went for American Express when one of their third party service providers experienced “unauthorized access to its system.”


Following the breach, American Express confirmed that none of their systems had been compromised but that some card members’ account information had been stolen. While the company did not disclose the number of customers affected, they did note that names, account numbers, and card expiration information had been a part of the breach. They also reached out to individual customers explaining the incident and assuring them that if unauthorized purchases were made using their card details, they would not be responsible for the charges.


Because of the two-steps-away nature of this hack, there was not a lot American Express card members could have done to prevent this attack from happening, but if you think you were one of these unlucky customers, there are a few steps they can take now. First, if you even suspect your information was stolen, request a new card. It’s a pain (especially if your card is tied to direct debits or bill pay) but worth it if criminals have your existing card number. Second, sign up for fraud alerts with AmEx and for credit alerts with Finally, go over your monthly statements with a fine-toothed comb to make sure no shady transactions appear.


Stay safe out there—and don’t be afraid to pay cash!