Detroit Zoo Latest Victim of Cyber Attack

Detroit Zoo Gift Shop Payment Processing Terminals Hacked

Detroit Zoo WebsiteThe Detroit Zoo disclosed this week that their gift shop checkout terminals fell prey to hackers.  The impacted parties are believed to be limited to those individuals who made purchases from the gift shop using their credit cards.

SSA Data Security Breach

Service Systems Associates, a third-party operator of concessions and retail services for the Detroit Zoo, experienced a data security breach of their point-of-sale systems in nine zoo gift shops between March 23 and June 25, 2015. We are deeply concerned about this matter and are monitoring the investigation. Further information will be shared as it becomes available.

The security breach reportedly impacted 7 other zoos nationwide, all of whom reportedly were using Service Systems Associates as a payment processing vendor.  The timeframe when information was believed to be exposed is limited to March 23rd through June 25th of this year.  The leadership at the Detroit Zoo is commended for taking swift actions to inform the public and those impacted after remediating the breach around June 25th, 2015.

According to the Detroit Zoo’s website, the breach impacted only the retail shop and none of the food terminals. Terminals used for ticket sales reportedly were not impacted by the breach.

Detroit Zoo’s Advisory:  What should I do if I suspect fraudulent activity on my account?
If your credit or debit card reveals fraudulent activity, it’s advisable to notify your card issuer as soon as possible and report any unauthorized charges. Most credit card companies do not hold customers liable for fraudulent charges if they are promptly reported. Additionally, here is some advice from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau:

If you believe you are a victim of identity theft, you should contact one of the consumer reporting agencies listed below to place a fraud alert on your credit report. You only need to contact one of the three credit reporting companies to place an alert.

  • TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289;; Fraud Victim Assistance Division, P.O. Box 67990, Fullerton, CA 92834-6790
  • Equifax: 1-800-525-6285;; P.O. Box 740241, Atlanta, GA 30374-0241
  • Experian: 1-888-EXPERIAN (397-3742);; P.O. Box 9554, Allen, TX 75013

For more details on the steps to take if you are a victim of identity theft, visit the Federal Trade Commission’s Identity Theft website at

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