Barnes & Noble customers face data breach. PIN pads hacked.

Barnes & Noble faces a data breach in 63 stores because of tampering of devices used to swipe credit and debit cards. Barnes & Noble called the breach a 'sophisticated criminal effort.'

Mike Blake/Reuters/File
A Barnes & Noble book store is shown in Encinitas, California, in this 2008 file photo. The bookseller said customers who have shopped as recently as last month at 63 of its 700 bookstores in the country may have their credit card information stolen, and has informed federal law enforcement authorities about the breach.

 Barnes & Noble Inc. says the tampering of devices used by customers to swipe credit and debit cards in 63 of its stores was a "sophisticated criminal effort" to steal information, and reiterated it has notified federal law enforcement authorities.

The nation's largest bookseller disclosed the data breach in stores from California to Florida late Tuesday, and warned customers to check for unauthorized transactions and to change their personal identification numbers, or PINs.

B&N says only one device, known as PIN pads, was tampered with in each store. All the PIN pads in its nearly 700 stores nationwide were disconnected on Sept. 14, after the company learned of the tampering.

B&N says the criminals planted bugs in the tampered devices, allowing for the capture of credit card and PIN numbers.

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