Buca di Beppo affected by massive data breach


If you’ve dined at one of the Bay Area’s three Buca di Beppo restaurants recently, you could be at risk for fraud. 

The restaurants parent company, Earl Enterprises, was informed by a security company that customer credit and debit cards were being sold online.

The breach took place between May 23, 2018 and March 18, 2019. Earl Enterprises launched a website for customers to check if they visited the impacted locations.

Potentially Affected Restaurants in the Bay Area: 

  • Buca di Beppo – 1875 South Bascom Avenue, Campbell (5/23/18 – 3/18/19)
  • Buca di Beppo – 643 Emerson Street, Palo Alto (5/23/18 – 3/18/19)
  • Buca di Beppo – 925 Blossom Hill Road, San Jose (5/23/18 – 3/1/19)

The incident has been contained, according to the company but customers are urged to check their credit card statements for any fraud.

Earl Enterprises also owns Planet Hollywood, Earl of Sandwich, Chicken Guy!, Mixology and Tequila Taqueria. 

Incidents like this one beg the question ‘how can I be sure my credit card information is safe?’

But according to experts KRON4 spoke with, you can never really be sure.

“They’re happening all the time. You just don’t hear about all of them,” said Consumer Finance Expert Erica Sandberg.

Sandberg says a couple thousand of these types of hacks happen each and every year, and unless you switch to using cash all the time you’re never really safe.

“If you do wanna use a credit card or debit card — just know there is an inherent risk to it,” she said.

On Monday, Earl Enterprises announced malicious software designed to capture card numbers, and expiration dates had been installed on its point of sale machines at its restaurants across the country

“These are high level security breaches, people who know a lot more than you do about how to dig in and get those numbers. And they’re very very good at what they do there’s virtually nothing you can do to stop that,” Sandberg said.

About 2.15 million customer credit and debit card numbers are being marketed on the dark web right now.

Experts say criminals will use the information to create counterfeit cards.

So what can you do?

“Go to the company website first, because you’ll be able to see all the numbers that are there,” she said.

And the next time you go out — swipe with caution.

“Expect it, expect that these breaches are going to happen and they are happening,” the expert said. “Always have it in the back of your mind that your credit card info is potentially out there.”

Cyber security experts say there is some good news — thanks to these chip cards that we all have on our cards these days, it’s much harder for criminals to actually clone the cards so a bit of a silver lining there.

Also, if you were a customer who ordered online using a third party platform like a Doordash or Grubhub, you are not a part of this breach.

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