Monday, May 13, 2013

Cybercriminals steal $45 million from ATMs: UPDATE 1

The matter of the $45 million stolen worldwide by a cybercriminal ring is something I plan to keep an eye on.   See my previous posting on it.

In a search of news items, most seem a repeat of what we've already seen.  A new article I saw in Forbes HERE does delve into how they got away with it.

Per the author, there are 4 things the thieves exploited:

  1. Using pre-paid debit cards
  2. Using cards with magnetic strips instead of chips
  3. Breached oversees card processors
  4. Large number of confederates utilizing cards worldwide

Each of these had their own issues.  The thing with using pre-paid debt cards is that unlike credit cards, there is no usage of buying habits to discover issues.  As I had both my main credit card numbers stolen recently, I know that it was by their unusual buying habits that this was caught.  (one card they started to use down in Brazil, the other was to make purchases across the state from me).

While some credit cards can have smart chips in them, they are sadly not universal in the US.  Magnetic cards are easily cloned, not an issue with smart cards.

The usage of oversees processors shows the weakness of their process.

And usage of all their confederates spread the risk to a large number.  There is the possibility that the use of them could be tracked back to the ringleaders.  This remains to be seen.

I still wonder why only cards issues by 2 banks in the Middle East were targeted.  There must be a reason.  And who killed the leader of the US gang in the Dominican Republic.  Hopefully as this case progresses, we'll learn more.

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