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Target Data Breach: Accounting for Contingent Liabilities
Hopkins, Justin J. Case C-2390 / Published October 6, 2017 / 4 pages.
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Product Overview

This is a flexible case that provides for discussion about the form and content of 10-K reports, managerial discussion and analysis, non-GAAP reporting, and accounting for contingent liabilities. What is unique is that Target included lengthy disclosures about the data breach, but many questions remain because the breach occurred shortly before year end. Further, the instructor can compare the contingent liability of $17 million reported in the 2013 10-K to the $201 million costs incurred by Target related to the breach as of the 2015 year end.

Learning Objectives

How firms convey information through 10-K reports and press releases; Qualitative aspects of the 10-K, including risk factors and managerial discussion and analysis (MD&A); Accounting for contingent liabilities. The case can also be used to discuss the regulatory environment firms face for public disclosures.

  • Overview

    This is a flexible case that provides for discussion about the form and content of 10-K reports, managerial discussion and analysis, non-GAAP reporting, and accounting for contingent liabilities. What is unique is that Target included lengthy disclosures about the data breach, but many questions remain because the breach occurred shortly before year end. Further, the instructor can compare the contingent liability of $17 million reported in the 2013 10-K to the $201 million costs incurred by Target related to the breach as of the 2015 year end.

  • Learning Objectives

    Learning Objectives

    How firms convey information through 10-K reports and press releases; Qualitative aspects of the 10-K, including risk factors and managerial discussion and analysis (MD&A); Accounting for contingent liabilities. The case can also be used to discuss the regulatory environment firms face for public disclosures.