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12/5/2007
12:01 PM
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Cybercriminals Suffer Major Data Leak

Waves of stolen personal data, credit card information now spreading fast around Warez, cracker forums

It's the identity thief's version of data leakage: Somewhere, a professional cybercriminal is kicking himself as his lucrative booty of stolen personal information is now rapidly making the rounds of cracking and Warez forums across the Internet.

No one's sure exactly how it started, but Chris Boyd, senior director of malware research for FaceTime Security Labs, yesterday blogged on how he had seen someone on a Warez site posting hundreds of credit card numbers, verification codes, PIN numbers, phone numbers, addresses, and zip codes. Boyd speculated that the poster was no pro -- he not only posted the data publicly, but also his own picture and location information.

Boyd and his team turned over the initial 150 or so files to the authorities, but the latest development is that there's a constantly changing set of stolen information from various sources circulating. "It's like someone paid a fortune for different collections of super secret card details, then woke up stupid and shared it all with the entire (underground) world by accident," Boyd blogged today.

Now that the cat's out of the bag, other posters on Warez and other shady sites are posting the data, according to Boyd. "It's pretty likely a pro somewhere has screwed up pretty badly and is no doubt wondering how to escape his new home at the bottom of a pool of sinky-sand," he said in his blog. "Meanwhile, the kidz -- sigh -- are running wild with this information."

And some of the data, which appears to be mostly on victims in the U.S., contained a "receiver address," which indicates it may have been stolen directly from a back-end payment system, Boyd says.

— Kelly Jackson Higgins, Senior Editor, Dark Reading

Kelly Jackson Higgins is the Executive Editor of Dark Reading. She is an award-winning veteran technology and business journalist with more than two decades of experience in reporting and editing for various publications, including Network Computing, Secure Enterprise ... View Full Bio

 

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