Security Experts:

Banks Drop Suit Against Target, Trustwave

The two banks who filed a lawsuit against security firm Trustwave in connection with the Target breach have moved to dismiss their lawsuit without prejudice to re-filing.

Green Bank of Houston and Trustmark National Bank of New York filed the documents Monday. The move comes after the companies filed a complaint March 24 naming both Trustwave and Target as defendants. The suit accused Trustwave of failing to find and mitigate security vulnerabilities in Target's network that would have prevented the breach.

In the suit, which sought unspecified damages, the banks claimed Trustwave was hired by Target to protect and monitor the retailer's systems, and that the security vendor scanned Target's systems on Sept. 20, 2013, and did not find any vulnerabilities. Furthermore, the banks claimed, the breach went on undetected for nearly three weeks while Trustwave was monitoring Target's systems.  

"Trustwave failed to live up to its promises, or to meet industry standards," the complaint stated. "Trustwave's failings, in turn, allowed hackers to cause the Data Breach and to steal Target customers' PII and sensitive payment card information. In addition, Trustwave failed to timely discover and report the Data Breach to Target or the public."

The dismissal filings did not offer a specific explanation as to why the suit was being dropped. In the days after the suit was filed however, Trustwave denied that it had been monitoring Target's network at the time of the breach.

"Contrary to the misstated allegations in the plaintiffs' complaints, Target did not outsource its data security or IT obligations to Trustwave," Trustwave’s CEO Robert McCullen, wrote in a letter to customers posted to the company’s website March 29. "Trustwave did not monitor Target's network, nor did Trustwave process cardholder data for Target."

The Target breach occurred from Nov. 27 to Dec. 15, and led to the compromise of millions of customer records as well as debit and credit card information. 

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