Massachusetts Restaurant Chain Fined $110,000 for Data Breach

Paul Lilly

If you're a business owner living in Massachusetts, failing to keep your customers' personal information safe from virtual prying eyes isn't just bad for business, it's also illegal. This was underscored by a MA restaurant chain agreeing to pay a $110,000 fine to settle a complaint alleging that hackers were able to access customers' credit and debit card information. That's a big no-no in Massachusetts.

According to , Massachusetts is home to the nation's toughest data breach law. In agreeing to pay $110,000 to settle charges, the Briar Group LLC becomes the first company to be fined under the law. The case actually dates back to an April 2009 incident when a malicious program was installed on Briar's network. The program wasn't detected and removed until eight months later.

In addition to the heavy fine, the Briar Group also agreed to prove compliance with the state's data security regulations and the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS). Despite all this, there aren't any hard feelings on the part of the Briar Group. In a statement, the Briar Group said the settlement "achieves our shared goal of ensuring that our customers can use their credit cards with confidence in the security of their data."

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