Petco Reports 401(k) Information Security Breach

August 10, 2012 ( – Petco has filed a notice of a data security breach of 401(k) participant information with the California Attorney General’s office.

By Rebecca Moore | August 10, 2012

According to the letter posted on the AG’s website, the outside auditor of Petco’s 401(k) plan informed the company that five laptop computers were stolen from its office during the weekend of May 18-20. The laptops may have contained certain personal information about participants such as the name and Social Security number of all associates who were issued a Petco paycheck in 2010, as well as associates who had a 401(k) account and received a distribution or had a fee deducted from their accounts in 2011.  

Petco said it is seeking an explanation from the auditor for the lapse of time in informing Petco of the incident.  

As of July 28, neither the auditor nor Petco had received any information suggesting that the personal information has been misused. In addition, the laptops were protected with a strong password and the plan information was contained in a software program with an encrypted password, the letter said.  

San Diego city police officers to whom the outside auditor reported the theft believe the thieves were targeting the equipment and not the information.  

Petco is offering affected participants one year of free credit monitoring.