Credit card schemes are a huge security issue for consumers, you never know if you will be targeted next. In recent news a prolific gang of foreign hackers stole and sold 160 million credit card numbers from more than a dozen companies, causing hundreds of millions of dollars in losses, federal prosecutors charged on Thursday in what they described as the largest hacking and data breach case in the country.
The attackers were hosted an anonymous Web server. Others broke into the targeted sites. Still another went inside and fetched the items of interest. The tactic is a signature of Russian organized crime syndicates. The defendants were identified as Vladimir Drinkman, Aleksandr Kalinin, Roman Kotov and Dmitriy Smilianets of Russia and Mikhail Rytikov of Ukraine. Mr. Smilianets and Mr. Drinkman were arrested in the Netherlands last year.
What are these cyber criminals using to commit these crimes?
The defendants would use so-called SQL injections, which infect a computer system with malicious software that in turn allows the attackers to steal or manipulate the contents of the system. Once they gained access to credit card numbers, some of the men would sell them to resellers. The defendants were generally able to sell American credit card numbers for $10 and European numbers for $50 because of the poorer security safeguards on American cards.
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