Illinois Cardholder Sues Neiman Marcus Over Data Breach

By Andrew Harris | March 18, 2014

Neiman Marcus Group Ltd., the luxury department store operator, was sued by an Illinois woman over a data breach in which the retailer initially said more than 1 million customer credit cards may have been compromised.

Hilary Remijas, a Neiman Marcus cardholder, sued the Dallas-based company yesterday in federal court in Chicago. She’s seeking to proceed on behalf of anyone who made a debit or credit-card purchase at the store from July 16 to Oct. 30.

“Neiman Marcus has placed the burden on aggrieved customers like plaintiff and the other members of the class, either to monitor their accounts and credit reports for years to come, or to spend time and money on fraud alerts or credit- report security freezes,” she said in the filing.

Data breaches have exposed information about millions of shoppers, leading to litigation and a call by some U.S. lawmakers for a national notification requirement. Executives of Neiman Marcus and Target Corp., which was also attacked by hackers, appeared before the Senate last month to answer questions about the breaches.

Remijas, who accused Neiman Marcus of breaching state consumer-fraud laws, is demanding money damages and a court order compelling the company to pay for at least three years of customer credit monitoring.

Smaller Number

While Neiman Marcus said in January that as many as 1.1 million credit cards could have been compromised by surreptitiously installed software from mid-July to late October, the company last month revised that number to about 350,000 potentially affected cards.

Credit-card issuers MasterCard Inc., Visa Inc. and Discover Financial also told the retailer that about 9,200 of those cards were later used fraudulently elsewhere, Karen Katz, the department store chain’s president, said in a statement posted on the Neiman Marcus website.

Ginger Reeder, a Neiman Marcus spokeswoman, citing company policy, declined to comment on the lawsuit.

A similar suit, filed in federal court in Atlanta in January, was dropped March 11 after the company challenged that plaintiff’s eligibility to pursue a claim.

The case is Remijas v. Neiman Marcus Group LLC, 14-cv-1735, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois (Chicago).

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