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Wendy’s investigates potential data breach

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Wendy’s may be the latest restaurant chain to fall victim to hacking, as the QSR is investigating a potential data breach that occurred at an undisclosed number of U.S. units, according to media reports.

“Reports indicate fraudulent charges may have occurred elsewhere after payment cards were legitimately used at some restaurants,” spokesman Bob Bertini told the media after the matter was raised by KrebsOnSecurity, a blog that reports on banking security and fraud. “We have launched a comprehensive investigation with the help of cybersecurity experts to gather facts, while working to protect our customers.”

Krebs has aired a first alert on a number of past credit card breaches among restaurants and retailers. It reached out to Wendy’s after hearing of unusual credit card activity from sources in the banking industry, Brian Krebs reported on his blog.

Wendy’s does not yet know the “nature or scope” of the possible incident, Bertini said.

If the suspicions prove true, Wendy’s would be the largest restaurant chain to suffer a breach. Most of the hackings in the restaurant industry to date have involved full-service brands, which are much more reliant on credit card transactions than quick-service restaurants typically are.

Last month, restaurant operator Landry’s Inc. warned that hackers had stolen customer data from its payment card system. That announcement came shortly after the Hilton hotel system said it had been hacked when the POS systems at some of its restaurants were infiltrated with malware. 

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