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    Houston C-store Chain Charged with Illegal Dumping of Receipts

    Retailer facing up to $500 per abandoned record.

    HOUSTON -- Petroleum Wholesale, which operated Sunmart Travel Centers and Convenience Stores in 10 states, was charged by the Texas Attorney General of improperly disposing of customer records containing information including Social Security numbers, bank account number and credit and debit card information.

    Local television station KPRC reported investigators said the Houston-based company dumped hundreds of records in a publicly accessible trash container outside its former headquarters. Illegally dumped records included receipts with customers' names and full credit or debit card numbers, including expiration dates.

    The company has been charged with violating the 2005 Identity Theft Enforcement and Protection Act, which requires companies safeguard and properly destroy records containing sensitive information, reported KPRC.

    Petroleum Wholesale was also charged with violating Chapter 35 of the Business and Commerce Code, which requires companies to develop retention and disposal procedures for confidential information. If found guilty, the company could be fined up to $500 per abandoned record.

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