A Pennsylvania woman has accused Rutter’s Inc. of not doing enough to protect credit card numbers and other sensitive information and not warning consumers about a massive data breach. The woman filed a federal lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania that seeks $5 million in damages. Her attorneys have asked the judge to certify the lawsuit as a class action. The company operates a chain of convenience stores and gas stations in West Virginia and Pennsylvania. Initial reports do not reveal how the woman suffered harm because of the data breach.

Rutter’s Inc. admits data breach and launches investigation

Rutter’s Inc. admitted in February that customer information could have been compromised. The report the company released revealed that malicious individuals had installed malware on gas pumps and point-of-sale devices at 70 of its locations. Lottery machines, ATMs and car washes were unaffected according to the company. The malware allowed the malicious individuals to gather credit and debit card numbers and expiration dates, but it did not provide them with access to other personal information. Rutter’s Inc. says that it became aware of the data breach on Jan. 14. The lawsuit claims that the malware may have been planted as early as September 2018 and could have accessed sensitive information until May 2019.

Lawsuit provides little evidence to support claims

The woman behind the lawsuit says that the malicious individuals who planted the malware may have used the data they collected to steal identities make fraudulent credit and debit card purchases, but she has not provided evidence to back up her claim. Attorneys representing the woman say that the perpetrators of the data breach are already using confidential information for illegal purposes. When questioned by the media, a Rutter’s Inc. representative declined to comment on ongoing litigation.

Litigating business disputes and protecting reputations

Lawsuits like this one can seriously damage corporate reputations even if they are ultimately unsuccessful. If you own a company and are facing litigation based on unsubstantiated allegations, an attorney with experience in business disputes could question the legal merits of the action and seek to have the lawsuit dismissed.