Richemont’s Watchfinder reports customer data breach

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Watchfinder, the dealer in pre-owned luxury watches that’s owned by Richemont, said it suffered a data breach that may have disclosed customer information.

The UK-based company, which sells watches online and in retail outlets, "recently discovered unauthorised access to a user account belonging to one of our employees," its chief executive officer, Arjen van de Vall, said in an email to clients and customers.

The Richemont unit is one of the biggest pre-owned watch dealers and competes against rival platforms like Watchbox and Chrono24. The popularity of buying and selling second-hand watches online surged during the pandemic as homebound consumers flush with cash discovered a new hobby. Prices for the most desirable Rolex, Audemars Piguet and Patek Philippe models soared before pulling back in April amid the selloff in equities and cryptocurrencies. 

The data breach "resulted in lists of our prospective customers being compromised," Van de Vall said in the email. The records may include email addresses, telephone numbers and any watches that customers and clients expressed an interest in, he said.

The data breach did not include postal addresses, passwords, credit card details or other banking information, the Watchfinder CEO said.

The company said customers should be alert to any "suspicious correspondence," adding that Watchfinder has "informed the relevant authorities and are conducting a further review of our security measures and policies."


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