Being involved in an incident in which the records of two million customers go astray is not at all pleasant. But the good news is that, if you handle it right, you may actually get some good publicity. Case in point:
Three Cheers for ABN - Yahoo! News:
... So now for the good news: ABN AMRO is run by a bunch of standup folks, and the gents at DHL aren't far behind. True, I could criticize ABN for failing to, say, task a VP to personally cart its data tapes from warehouse to warehouse, and for instead shipping this valuable information like so many pounds of unwanted fruitcake. I could also place DHL in the same butterfingers basket at UPS. But in honor of the holiday season, I'll say instead what these companies did right.
DHL, for its part, upon learning on Nov. 18 that a data tape had gone missing, left no stone unturned trying to find it -- and ultimately did find it after a monthlong search. ABN gets credit for helping in the search and for (relatively) quickly informing its at-risk customers of the loss. But ABN gets extra credit for what it did after DHL found the tape.
Although the package containing the data tape was discovered apparently unopened, ABN volunteered to pay for one full year of credit monitoring for each of its 2 million clients who might conceivably have had their data compromised. That beats out Citigroup's June offer by 275 days, and it matches the offers from Ameritrade, ChoicePoint, and Reed.
Finally, ABN has determined that it will not let this situation ever happen again. For here on out, the company announced last week that it will discontinue outsourced shipping of sensitive personal data on tapes and switch to using only encrypted electronic means to transfer such data. Welcome to the 21st century, ABN. I just wish you had more company.