Target CEO Gregg Steinhafel stepped down Monday in the wake of a massive, pre-Christmas data breach that resulted in the theft of 40 million debit and credit card numbers, as well as the potential exposure of personal information of up to 70 million shoppers.
Here's a timeline of events leading up to Steinhafel's departure.
1999: Steinhafel named president after 20 years with the company during which he held numerous merchandising and operating positions.
2007: Steinhafel named to Target's board of directors.
May 2008: Steinhafel named president and CEO.
January 2009: Steinhafel named chairman of Target's board.
Dec. 19, 2013: Target acknowledges that data connected to about 40 million credit and debit card accounts was stolen as part of a breach that began over the Thanksgiving weekend. The theft marks the second-largest credit card breach in U.S. history. Steinhafel issues a statement of apology the following day.
Jan. 10, 2014: Target announces that in addition to the credit and debit card numbers, personal information — including phone numbers and email and mailing addresses — were stolen from as many as 70 million customers in the breach, putting them at risk of identity theft.
The chain also said its sales had been hurt by the breach, cutting its forecast for fourth-quarter earnings and a key sales barometer.
Jan. 29, 2014: Target says investigators found that hackers stole credentials from a vendor to access the retailer's systems. It did not identify the vendor at the time, but a Pittsburgh-area heating and refrigeration business that did business with Target later came forward to say that it also was the victim of a sophisticated cyberattack.
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