HSBC Finance Says Some Mortgage Customers’ Information May Have Been Compromised

Customers of HSBC’s U.S.-based finance division are the latest victims of a data breach, the bank confirmed this week in a letter to the New Hampshire Attorney General.

American Banker reports that HSBC Finance, which was previously known as Household Finance before being purchased by the company in 2003, suffered a breach in which some records of current and former mortgage customers were compromised.

The company says that personal information about mortgage accounts, such as customers’ names, Social Security numbers, account numbers and possibly telephone numbers, were “inadvertently made accessible via the Internet.”

HSBC says it learned of the breach, which took place late last year, at the end of March.

The company declined to provide American Banker additional information about how many consumers were affected or how the breach occurred.

However, HSBC says it has ensured that the compromised information is no longer publicly available, and that notification has be sent to potential victims.

Customers affected by the breach are eligible for a free one-year subscription to a credit monitoring and identity theft protection service.

“HSBC takes this very seriously, and deeply regrets that this incident occurred,” the bank wrote in the letter. “We are conducting a thorough review of the potentially affected records and have implemented additional security measures designed to prevent a recurrence of such an incident.”

HSBC Finance Notifies Mortgage Customers of Data Breach [American Banker]