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Another Target oops: Gift cards

By Janna Herron ·
Thursday, January 2, 2014
Posted: 4 pm ET

As if a massive data breach during the holidays wasn't bad enough for Target, now it appears the retailer sold faulty gift cards, too.

The nation's second largest discount retailer confirmed to Bankrate that 0.1 percent of gift cards it sold during the holidays were not activated properly, according to company spokeswoman, Molly Snyder.

Consumers with faulty gift cards would find their cards had a zero balance, Snyder says. Affected consumers can bring the card to the customer service desk at their local store or call 1-800-544-2943 for assistance. The retailer will honor all impacted cards, Snyder says.

The latest snafu pales in comparison to the huge breach Target stores suffered from Nov. 27 through Dec. 15. The retailer said 40 million credit card and debit card accounts were compromised in the breach. Hackers stole consumer's names, card account numbers, expiration dates, security codes and encrypted personal identification numbers, or PINs, of debit cards. It was the second largest data breach at a U.S. retailer.

Did you get a faulty Target gift card? Was it resolved?

Follow me on Twitter: @JannaHerron.

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January 04, 2014 at 7:23 am

This could have happened to any large retailer. Target remains one of my favorites. They have great pricing and stylish products. This will not turn me away from shopping there.

January 04, 2014 at 2:16 am

Guys, Please stop putting target down. It is the best we have in this country, great service and products and well organized stores. I Do live in Chicago area and Target is the only one which we trust. Please don't put Target and Wallmart in a same level.

I have been a target customer and still are for last 20 plus years and trust them.
Why not ask banking companies which monitor the credit cards for Target and they are the one which needs to answer. Target has a great team and strong customer services as well.

January 04, 2014 at 12:50 am

Target is not the first to have a breach and will not be the last. TJMaxx and several others have had breaches in the past couple of years. Target is in the spotlight because it is so big. I am dumbfounded by the number of people who refuse to be problem solvers and just want somebody to solve their problems for them and just complain, complain, complain. If you don't have your debit card for the short term, try going to the bank and getting cash for your purchases. Why in heaven's name would anybody not have the activation slip and/or your target receipt that has the gift card number on it and what the value should be. And even more mind boggling would be why would you give somebody a gift card without the activation receipt slip with it? Unfortunately people these days for the most part just want to complain and not take the bull by the horns and just figure things out and quit sitting around waiting for somebody to make their life easy. You have every right to shop where you want, however don't be so naive as to think that another retailer will be next. It is just the world in which we live- too many people who would rather find easy money by spending way too much time in crime than an honest day's work.

January 03, 2014 at 11:30 pm

Morgan, No disrespect; but as a Target employee I don't think it is professional for you to talk poorly about your competition; Walmart. You state you are an employee of Target and "walmart has very bad customer service and there employees are very rude. I am a target employee and we value our customers very highly."
As a customer of both, I must say I feel the opposite about Target. Walmart treats me as a valued customer much more than Target. Target seems to be fine when I am SPENDING my money there, but Walmart treats me as a valued customer when I am RETURNING items, unlike Target. I also feel that the employees are not as nice at Target as they are at Walmart (especially returns) and I value that as more important as my value as a customer. This is in the eyes of the customer, not the employee!
Maybe you should try to find a job at Walmart where the customers feel more appreciated? (Prices are lower too)

January 03, 2014 at 10:51 pm

Rose, if you were referring to a bank-issued debit card, I believe a trip to your bank might be useful in getting you a temporary card to use before your real card comes in the mail. I had a fraud issue on my Bank of America debit card about a year ago and that's what I did. Call the bank directly to find out if they offer this service before making the trip. Good luck!

January 03, 2014 at 9:14 pm

If the cards were not properly activated how would Target know how much the card was for. What is to stop someone from saying it was for $100 instead of the actual $10 it was for?

January 03, 2014 at 8:40 pm

Always get and give the receipt with the gift card. I was informed by a former employee that the customer thinks the card is activated but a crooked cashier will swipe another card and keep it for themselves. Leaving you with an unactivated gift card. Just a FYI

January 03, 2014 at 8:20 pm

Don't stop shopping at Target. Try using CASH. Amazingly, most stores still take it at their registers. Try it sometime. Save interest on those purchases too. No one can steal your identity when you hand over the green paper......

dianne b
January 03, 2014 at 8:19 pm

I was talking to a retail clerk 3 or 4 months ago when I was buying a gift card and she told me the following. People need gifts for something and they buy a gift card and pay with a check. The check is connected to the gift card and if the check bounces the card gets deactivated so when the recipient shows up to use their gift card it is no good. She said it happens all the time. If this is true maybe we should look at our gift giving acquaintances, friends and relatives and not just the retailers

January 03, 2014 at 7:59 pm

You can't really trust Target now for honesty in any area. Why bother shopping there?There are certain things I shop for at Target(not a Walmart fan), but now I'm not sure I want to use my credit card there at all.