Chili's data breach: Your ribs could've come with a side of credit card theft

I want my baby hack baby hack baby hack...

Gordon Gottsegen CNET contributor
Gordon Gottsegen is a tech writer who has experience working at publications like Wired. He loves testing out new gadgets and complaining about them. He is the ghost of all failed Kickstarters.
Gordon Gottsegen
Company Signs

Sign for Chili's restaurant at Jacksonville Beach, Florida, USA.

Diane Macdonald/Getty Images

Eating out at Chili's may have put your credit card info at risk. The restaurant chain revealed that it suffered a data breach, possibly exposing credit card and debit card information for customers who recently dined at its restaurants.

Chili's says it learned of the breach on May 11. Not every Chili's location or customer was affected by the breach, according to the company, but it didn't provide specifics about how many people or which locations were affected. Even though Chili's doesn't say how many people are affected, it recommends that customers monitor their card or bank statements for suspicious activity, or put out a fraud alert or credit freeze.

Chili's believes that malware was used to gather credit card and debit card info (including names and card numbers) from pay stations for in-restaurant purchases (online orders were probably safe). It believes the breach occurred between March and April 2018 and says it's investigating the incident to find out more.

Chili's doesn't collect personal information like Social Security numbers, state or federal IDs or birthdates, so the company says this info wasn't exposed.

Chili's uses Ziosk touchscreen devices to let customers pay at the table. It's unknown if these were related to the hack.

Chili's declined to comment further, but told us to watch its site for more info.