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Mexican store chain calls hack attempt ‘extortion’

December 26, 2014

MEXICO CITY (AP) — One of Mexico’s leading department store chains says employees’ email accounts were hacked and some customer information was taken.

The upscale Liverpool chain said in a statement to the Mexican Stock Exchange on Christmas eve that the attack was part of “an extortion attempt,” but did not say what the extortionists had demanded.

Small and medium-sized businesses in Mexico are frequently targets of extortion attempts by gangs who demand protection payments. But large chains are seldom attacked, and seldom are the demands enforced by hacking into a company’s computers.

El Puerto de Liverpool, SAB de CV, has 106 stores in 57 Mexican cities. It said the attack “sought to damage our reputation,” and added the risk to customers’ accounts was deemed to be small.

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