For Immediate Release - October 03, 2011

AG Coakley Warns Former Borders Customers That Their Customer Information Will Be Sold Unless They Opt-Out

BOSTON – Attorney General Coakley today warned former customers of Borders bookstores, that their customer information will be sold to Barnes and Noble bookstores as part of its bankruptcy proceeding unless they opt-out in advance. The book seller, which recently filed for bankruptcy, has been allowed by the Bankruptcy Court to sell its customer information to Barnes & Noble bookstores.

Barnes & Noble has promised the Bankruptcy Court that it will protect this sensitive information and that Borders customers who do not want their information transferred will have the opportunity to opt-out and have their information securely deleted.  There are approximately 45 million Borders customers whose information will be transferred, and all Borders customers will be given a choice about moving their information to Barnes & Noble.

“Customers of Borders bookstores need to know that their information is being sold and that they have a limited amount of time to opt-out,” said AG Coakley.  “We urge consumers who have concerns about the use of their private data to take action.”

As part of the agreement, Barnes & Noble will send an email to all Borders customers whose information is being transferred and clearly explain what information is being transferred and how to opt-out.  In an effort to reach affected consumers without email addresses, Barnes & Noble will also publish notice on its website, the Borders' website, and in a full page advertisement in USA Today.

Borders customers who wish to opt-out will have 15 calendar days to contact Barnes & Noble after the email notice is sent.  Customers who cannot be reached by email will have 30 days to contact Barnes & Noble through the website notices.

To view the letter that Borders issued to its customers click the following link: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/container/stores.asp?PID=39742.

Consumers who do not wish to share their information with Barnes & Noble can go directly to the opt-out page on the Borders website: http://ebm.cheetahmail.com/r/regf2?a=0&aid=266639891&n=100.

The information being transferred to Barnes & Noble includes:

  • Information customers shared with the Borders website, including name, address, and email address.
  • Information collected from customers in the Borders Rewards loyalty program, including customer name, address, email address, and purchase history.  This purchase history will not include the titles of video materials (like DVDs or VHS tapes) purchased by customers.
  • Email addresses from customers who requested to receive special offers from Borders.

The information being transferred to Barnes & Noble DOES NOT include:

  • Credit card or financial account information.  All of this information is being securely deleted and will not be sold.

Once this information is transferred to Barnes & Noble it will be protected under the Barnes & Noble privacy policy, which is available on the Barnes & Noble website, at http://www.barnesandnoble.com/help/cds2.asp?PID=25560.

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