April 12, 2006

Ross-Simons says security breach exposes customers

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Ross-Simons, which sells specialty
merchandise through retail stores and more than 60 million
catalogs each year, late on Tuesday said a security breach
could allow unauthorized access to its customers' confidential
financial information.

The company -- whose products includes jewelry, gifts and
home decorative merchandise -- said the data breach has
potential to harm individuals who had applied for its private
label credit card.

Although the security snafu has been identified and
corrected and the matter is under investigation, Ross-Simons
said it may have exposed the private label credit card numbers
and other personal information of those that had applied for
the cards.

"Ross-Simons has engaged an independent third party to
conduct an immediate external audit of its security
procedures," the company said in a statement, as the retailer
continues to notify all affected customers in order to minimize
their possible risks.

Officials of the Providence, Rhode Island-based company
could not immediately be reached for comment.