Could Target have prevented its massive security breach?

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A committee report from the U.S. Senate says leading up to its massive security breach, Target received several automated warning signs indicating hackers were planning something. And the report goes on to say Target ignored those warnings.

Some of those automated alerts revealed how the attackers would pull data out of Target's network, while others warned Target that malware was being installed on their system.

"This analysis suggests that Target missed a number of opportunities along the kill chain to stop the attackers and prevent the massive data breach," the report stted.

Target is not commenting on the report. Several of the company's executives will testify Wednesday at a committee hearing on how to protect personal consumer information from a cyber attack.

The report is likely to add to the existing frustrations that so many consumers have over the data breach.

The company said so far that some 40 million payment card records were stolen along with 70 million other customer records during the attack.

Target faces dozens of potential class-action lawsuits and action from banks that could seek reimbursement for millions of dollars in losses due to fraud and the cost of card replacements.

The report also states that Target gave access to its network to a third-party vendor that did not follow accepted information security practices.

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