One of (if not THEE) largest online shoe retailer notified their customer database this morning that their customer database had been hacked.

Online retailer Zappos.com is telling 24 million customers that their personal information has been hacked, and forcing all of them to reset their passwords. Cyber criminals may have accessed customers' names, e-mail addresses, billing and shipping addresses, phone number, and the last four digits of consumers' credit card numbers, the firm said in an announcement that was posted on Zappos' Web site late Sunday night. Full credit card numbers were not stolen, the firm said, because they were stored separately.

The news comes with a novel way of handling the anticipated deluge questions and complaints;  Zappos turned off their phones.

Anticipating a flood of customer service calls in response to the notification e-mail, Zappos is taking the unusual step of turning off its customer service telephone lines and forcing consumers with questions to send them in via e-mail.

"Due to the volume of inquiries we are expecting, we realized that we could serve the most customers by answering their questions by email," Hsieh said in a note to employees, also posted on the firm's Web page. "We have made the hard decision to temporarily turn off our phones and direct customers to contact us by email because our phone systems simply aren't capable of handling so much volume. (If 5% of our customers call, that would be over 1 million phone calls, most of which would not even make it into our phone system in the first place.) "