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The Boston Globe reports that there is a move afoot in Massachusetts to make retailers legally responsible for any costs associated with losses incurred when there are security breaches that put their customers’ credit card and debit card data at risk.

The call, by the Massachusetts Bankers Association, follows the revelation over the weekend that Ahold-owned Stop & Shop was working with federal investigators to determine how many consumers may have had their credit and debit card data stolen by high-tech thieves who apparently broke into checkout-line card readers at a half-dozen stores.

“What happened at Stop & Shop is another example of retailers not doing enough to protect consumers," Massachusetts Bankers Association's spokesman Bruce E. Spitzer tells the Globe. "If companies know they'll be responsible for every expense caused by a security breach, maybe they'll finally invest in better security."

However, the Retailers Association of Massachusetts objects to the proposal, which has been offered up in the form of legislation by State Rep. Michael A. Costello (D-Newburyport), saying that it would add needless new expenses -- pumping up bank profits, not protecting consumers.
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