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Home Depot reportedly got warnings about its data security in 2008

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Home Depot may have only recently had to cope with a massive data breach, but it reportedly knew that it had to step up its computer security much, much earlier. The New York Times claims that there had been calls for tougher safeguards as far back as 2008, and that the big-box store has been lax about protecting its network for "years" despite plenty of warnings from its security team. It didn't watch for unusual activity, infrequently scanned for weak points and ran antivirus tools from 2007. Even a network manager hired in 2012 went to prison this year for disabling systems at his previous job -- not something Home Depot would have necessarily known about at the time, but still a problem.

For its part, the retailer says it's running "robust security systems" and has closed off attack avenues by both encrypting its cash registers and embracing chip-based payments. It's also reportedly meeting credit card standards that let it safely skip certain vulnerability scans. The network updates should help prevent any future data disasters, but the real question is whether or not Home Depot will do more to thwart hackers in the future. If it simply repeats history and doesn't adapt to new threats, your payment info could still be at risk.

[Image credit: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images]

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