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New Fraud Ring "Bargain Bear" Brings Sophistication to Online Crime

The ring tests the validity of stolen credentials to be used in fraud through an online marketplace.

A new report out today says that online fraud is soaring in 2020. As an example, the report introduces the activity of a fraud ring in Russia that tested dozens of credit cards and digital wallets by posting fraudulent content listings on an e-commerce marketplace.

The report, from digital trust company Sift, states that the fraud ring was notable for its sophistication. Members of the ring would buy and sell items to one another via an online market in order to test whether stolen credit card credentials were still active and valid.

Sophisticated testing is part of what the report calls the "fraud supply chain," as it describes the ecosystem that allows global fraud to be successful. According to the research, the 15 members of the fraud ring dubbed "Bargain Bear" would sell and buy from one another, negotiate prices down to make the exchange seem more legitimate, and even write one another positive reviews.

In addition to financial fraud, the report notes that "content abuse" in the form of unwanted, unreliable, and potentially malicious email and messages is surging in 2020, with spam and attempted spam postings from January through May up 109% from the same time a year ago.

For more, read here.

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