The Target data breach is worse than first thought after the company released a statement Friday in which it stated about 70 million people may have been affected by a security breach.
According to the release Friday, names, mailing addresses or phone numbers were stolen from close to 70 million people. Many of the people affected also had their email address stolen, Target officials said.
"As part of Target's ongoing forensic investigation, it has been determined that certain guest information - separate from the payment card data previously disclosed - was taken from Target," the company release said.
The investigation is also affecting sales at the retail giant. According to Target, sales dipped 2.5 percent from the fourth quarter of 2012.
Target said the company is trying to reach out to all the people affected by the theft.
"People affected by the breach will not be held liable for the fraudulent charges arising from the breach," Target officials said.
Anyone who shopped at a Target store recently is being offered one year of free credit monitoring and identity theft protection, and customers have three months to enroll in the program.
"I know that it is frustrating for our guests to learn that this information was taken, and we are sorry they are having to endure this," said Gregg Steinhafel, chairman, president and CEO of Target in a statement Friday. "Our guests expect more from us and deserve better. And I want them to know that understanding and sharing the facts is important to me and the entire Target team."
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