Nussle: MasterCard settlement with Target is long overdue

WASHINGTON, DC (April 16, 2015) – MasterCard has announced a settlement in its case against Target to recover costs card issuers suffered due to a massive data breach of the retailer’s systems.

“It’s been 16 months since the Target breach became public and only now are credit unions seeing light at the end of the tunnel,” said Jim Nussle, President and CEO of CUNA. “We appreciate MasterCard taking this first step, but the fact remains that the underlying vulnerabilities that allowed this breach and others to occur in the first place have not been addressed: merchants that accept cards for payment are not held to the same data security standards as credit unions and banks that issue cards.  The weak link in the payment system must be addressed. Senators Tom Carper and Roy Blunt introduced legislation to stop merchant data breaches by imposing strong security standards on those that accept cards for payment and I’m hopeful Congress will act to protect American consumers from future identity theft and fraud caused by data breaches.”

The settlement to reimburse credit unions and banks up to $19 million will settle claims for operational costs and fraud-related losses on cards believed by MasterCard to have been affected by the data breach.

The settlement is contingent on, among other things, issuers representing at least 90 percent of the eligible MasterCard accounts accepting their alternative recovery offers, either directly or through their sponsoring issuers, by May 20. If it is carried out, accepting issuers will be paid by the end of the second quarter of 2015.

CUNA has actively engaged both MasterCard and Visa in an effort to help recover credit unions’ costs and hosted high level meetings with card network staff. The card networks have made their staff available to help credit unions understand the recovery process and the status of their efforts.

About CUNA:

With its network of affiliated state credit union leagues, Credit Union National Association (CUNA) serves America’s credit unions, which are owned by more than 100 million consumer members. Credit unions are not-for-profit cooperatives providing affordable financial services to people from all walks of life. For more information about CUNA, visit or follow @CUNA on Twitter. For more information about credit unions, visit and follow @asmarterchoice on Twitter. Visit the CUNA Press Room for a full listing of media mentions, press releases and resources to stay informed on current events within the credit union industry.

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