02/05/2009 | Update
Don't you just love mug shots? Since this has been all over the news, it may be interesting to hear and read that there is now a full-scale manhunt on for these folks (who are guaranteed to be low-level "cashers"), in order to flip them on their bosses. Hopefully this is tracked by the FBI to its end.
[ Source: http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,487184,00.html ]
If you're still skeptical about the impact that the poor economy is having on fraud and hacking, read this new story off the Fox News wire. The FBI has uncovered a $9M world-wide coordinated ATM withdrawl...
"In a matter of hours, thieves struck ATMs from 49 different cities — including New York, Atlanta, Chicago, Moscow and Montreal — just after 8 p.m. EST on Nov. 8, according to the FBI."While this is certainly not the first time stolen records (this time from RBS WorldPay) were used in ATM fraud which resulted in real dollar-losses, this is one of the biggest. What's even of higher note is that this happened in an extremely well-coordinated fashion, from the quote above. Hacking isn't just about bored high-school kids anymore - it's about organized crime syndicates, making real multi-million dollar hacks-and-fraud schemes a reality nightmare for banks. All the compliance in the world won't protect you if you've done nothing to fix security issues at these banks, card issuers, and card processors (like Heartland Payment Systems).
For a while now we've been discussing how big the potential fraud will be from the HPS ~100MM record heist... and if we extrapolate out from the RBS Worldpay attack... (which was 1.5MM records) the incidence of fraud for the Heartland Payment Systems hack will be catastrophic.
This should be yet another wake-up call for banks, processors, and card institutions... FIX YOUR SECURITY else face the wrath of fraudsters (and extremely upset end-users).