More trouble for Target after 40,000 gift cards sold over the holidays fail to work
- Target failed to scan the correct barcode on thousands of gift cards
- Shoppers being told the cards have no value when at the check out
- Target urged shoppers to seek help in-store or by calling the number on the back of their gift card
- It comes 10 days after the store suffered a major data breach, leaving hackers to get their hands on the card details of 40 million customers
Target is in hot water again after it emerged that a reported 40,000 gift cards sold over the holidays were not properly activated - leaving them with no value.
The latest debacle comes just a week after the retail giant suffered a massive data breach which saw hackers access information to an estimated 40 million customer credit and debit cards.
Now the store is under fire for scanning the wrong code on gift cards when handing them over to shoppers, meaning that the value was not activated, KMSP in Minnesota reported.
It means that when the recipients of the cards head to the register intending to use them, they will apparently have no value.
Oops: Target workers scanned the wrong bar code on gift cards so their values were not activated
A Target spokesperson told MailOnline that the number of cards affected was less that one per cent of those sold over the holiday period, while KMSP put the number at 40,000.
'We are aware that some Target gift cards were not fully activated and apologize for the inconvenience,' a spokesperson said, adding that the impacted cards will be honored.
If a customer thinks their card has not been activated, they should take it to the guest service desk at their local Target store or call 1-800-544-2943 for assistance.
However, it may be a struggle to get through on the phone line as the store is experiencing a high volume of calls, KMSP reported.
One shopper affected by the debacle is Jennifer Sheldon, from Camillus, New York, who told the Syracuse Post-Standard that she was shocked when her $200 gift card failed to swipe at the store.
Sheldon, a mother receiving disability payments, had received the card from 'a needy family Christmas giveaway', she said, and 'felt on top of the world like I had just won the lottery'.
She went to Target hoping to stock up on milk, eggs, juice, diapers for her baby, clothes for her daughter and a toaster oven - but was told that the card had no value on it.
Trouble ahead: It means that shoppers are unable to pay with the gift cards at the register
Affected? Target encourages shoppers to seek help in-store or call the number on the back of the card
'They basically told me that the gift card that I received was useless without the receipt,' she said.
'I know that cashiers are busy especially during the holiday season but they need to make sure that when someone purchases a gift card that they make sure that they fully activate it.
'They don't know if it is being donated to a needy family who was hoping to use it to buy necessities such as milk and eggs and who has no way of knowing who donated the gift card to obtain the purchase receipt.'
The spokesperson disputed that shoppers need the gift receipt to receive the proper value and that all stores have received clear instructions on how to treat the issue.