The axe falls at Target (part 1)

I published the following comment at RetailWire last week, part of a larger discussion about the conversion of Target’s credit cards to chip-and-pin technology and the hiring of a new CIO. (Of course, the other shoe dropped this week.) Here’s my point of view:

It’s been well-documented that the U.S. is far behind other parts of the world in adapting chip-and-pin technology for its debit and credit cards. (And readers may have run into this issue while traveling to Europe and elsewhere.) It’s a big step for a major retailer like Target to convert its proprietary card to a safer technology. Now, if the other issuers of credit cards (especially bank cards) would follow suit…

Meanwhile, the hiring of an outside tech expert to be Target’s next CIO will help the company wrestle with remaining data security issues. Target has a tradition of internal promotion to senior positions — which is sometimes admirable, sometimes not — and in this case the outgoing CIO was a “homegrown” talent without as much tech background as needed in hindsight.


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