Target’s CEO, Gregg Steinhafel, told CNBC that the data breach that has left millions of customers’ sensitive personal information exposed was “a real punch in the gut.” After disclosing information about the credit and debit card information cyber-crime, Target’s sales have taken a dramatic turn for the worse.
“Clearly customers were confused, they were frustrated, they didn’t really understand,” Steinhafel said. “It was a pretty big impact.”
According to YouGov’s BrandIndex, a daily measurement of brand perception among the public, Target’s reputation among shoppers plunged during the final shopping days before Christmas when the security breach was first announced to consumers.
Although Steinhafel mentioned that sales have since rebounded from the retail giant’s recent fiasco, Target is still under fire after another startling disclosure.
The initial sales drop came after Target revealed information about the nearly 40 million credit and debit card accounts that were compromised during the 14-day cyber-attack between Nov. 27 and Dec. 15. Since then, Target has come forward saying that up to 70 million more customers were affected by the data breach, and sensitive information such as names, mailing addresses and emails were also taken.