By Khadeeja Safdar
Technical problems at Target Corp. stores this weekend frustrated shoppers, who were unable to make purchases for two hours on Saturday or use a credit card at some stores on Sunday.
Target said the two incidents were unrelated, and neither was caused by a cyberattack. However, both resulted in customer complaints.
On Saturday, Target's checkout systems suffered a nationwide outage, which the retailer said was caused by a problem during routine maintenance of its computer systems. Employees identified and fixed the problem after roughly two hours.
"After an initial but thorough review, we can confirm that this was not a data breach or security-related issue, and no guest information was compromised at any time," a Target spokesman said on Saturday.
On Sunday, Target said customers were unable to process certain card payments at some stores for about 90 minutes because NCR Corp., a vendor it uses to help accept payments, experienced an issue at one of its data centers. A spokesman for NCR didn't respond to a request for comment.
"We can confirm that this was not a security-related issue and no payment information was compromised," a Target spokeswoman said on Sunday.
Many shoppers took to Twitter to complain of long lines and confusion at stores. They used the hashtag #TargetDown and pointed out the poor timing, on Father's Day weekend.
The technical problems are a setback for Target, which has been investing heavily to remodel its stores and improve its technology as it battles Walmart Inc., Amazon.com Inc. and others for customers. In recent quarters, it has reported strong sales growth boosted by U.S. consumer spending.
In 2013, Target suffered a data breach, which affected as many as 70 million people and led to an $18.5 million settlement to resolve an investigation by state prosecutors.
Write to Khadeeja Safdar at email@example.com