Pa. attorney general warns Borders customers of data sale

    If the now-bankrupt Borders had your personal information, that data could soon be in Barnes & Noble’s hands.

    The book store acquired Borders customers’ data as part of a $14 million deal approved by federal bankruptcy court.

    “Borders operated approximately 30 stores in Pennsylvania, so this data transfer has the potential to impact a large number of consumers across the state,” Pa. Attorney General Linda Kelly wrote in an Oct. 3 letter.
    “Nearly 50 million former Borders customers, including thousands of Pennsylvania residents, will soon receive an important e-mail notification about the possible transfer of their customer information.”

    My letter came last week.

    “Our intent in buying the Borders customer list is simply to try and earn your business,” reads the email from B&N. “It’s important for you to understand however you have the absolute right to opt-out of having your customer data transferred to Barnes & Noble. If you would like to opt-out, we will ensure all your data we receive from Borders is disposed of in a secure and confidential manner.”

    Kelly has urged customers to review their privacy rights regardless of whether they opt out of the B&N transfer.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal