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Barnes & Noble credit card machines breached, card data stolen
Barnes & Noble had 63 stores hit -- including its flagship "world's largest bookstore" in New York City, after hackers stole vast amounts of credit card data from around the United States. The data was stolen from the credit card machines part of the 63 store's cash registers. A public letter said the book giant had disabled its 7,000 keypads in hundreds of its stores, despite only one store being hit in the successful hacking attack.
The hack was kept quiet for more than five weeks for the U.S. Justice Dept. and the FBI to investigate. Barnes & Noble said it was "working with banks, payment card brands and issuers" to identify any accounts that may have been compromised.
November: Hacker leaks VMware ESX kernel source code to the Web
More from Anonymous, as hackers associated with the collective leaked the VMware ESX Server's kernel source code to the Web. The 2MB file (compressed) was small in size but the independently verified source code was out in the open.
Because kernel source code doesn't change much, "some core functionality still stays the same," the hacker said, indicating that users of the bare bones operating system-independent virtualization server could be at risk for future hacks. VMware said in a public statement that "more related files will be posted in the future," as the virtualization giant scrambled to update its platform to ensure its customers are secure.
December: Nationwide Mutual hacked, 1.1 million Americans affected
And last but not least, insurance giant Nationwide Mutual suffered a hack that affected 1.1 million Americans, according to North Carolina Attorney General. It's thought that the hackers may have been from overseas, and may not have been on U.S. soil.
Customers' names, Social Security numbers, and driver's license details were all pilfered by the hackers, and the possibility of date of birth and marital status, gender and their employers name could not be ruled out. The extent of the hack may not be realized until the early part of 2013. The insurance company prepared a statement and said it was "very sorry," but was not aware of "any misuse of customers' information."