When Steam was hacked way back in November, Valve took the high road and immediately informed users of the breach. (Not that the company had much choice -- the hackers defaced the Steam forums as part of their nefarious deeds.) The baddies snuck into an encrypted database full of sensitive user info -- including credit card numbers -- but Valve found no evidence that any of the data was stolen or cracked. That's the good news. Now the bad news: the breach is probably worse than originally thought and the hackers may still have your credit card information.
Think the odd, stilted language of the L337 pre-teens on Halo is hard to understand? Apparently, trying to communicate with credit card thieves is even worse. But while incomplete sentences and gibberish slang is annoying on Xbox Live, it’s a boon in hacking chat rooms, because the poor English on display makes it easier for good guy spybots to pass themselves off as just another foreign credit card scraper. An Austin security firm called CSIdentity is doing just that.
Hackers are trying to take credit for bringing down MasterCard's website yesterday, a plausible claim given the recent hackathon that's been sweeping through cyberspace. However, the world's second largest consumer payment network blamed the temporary downtime on its telecommunications service provider, while insisting that no card user accounts are in jeopardy.
Supply and demand. It's a simple and fundamental economic model of price determination in a market. We're not going to cover all the particulars and instead will assume you have at least a basic understanding of how it works (if not, Investopedia breaks it down in plain English). The reason we bring it up is because your credit card -- that Platinum one jammed in your wallet -- is worth a mere $35 in the black market. Your Corporate card fetches $45. In other words, it costs more to take the family to Green Lantern at the local cinema than it does to purchase a stolen credit card.
We would say this is getting ridiculous, but it crashed right through ridiculous a long time ago. Traditional adjectives will no longer suffice. See, as it turns out, not only did hackers manage to worm their way into MMO maker SOE's servers, but they Hulk-smashed right through the service's defenses two freaking weeks ago. Oh, and they may have gotten their grubby mitts on 24.6 million accounts' worth of personal info. And when did Sony finally notice? Today. Just let that sink in for a moment, and then click past the break for the none-too-pretty details.
Officials believe they caught the man responsible for hacking into the Federal Reserve Bank's computers in Cleveland and who also separately had more than 400,000 stolen credit card numbers, NBC New York reports.
Secret Service agents caught Lin Mun Poo at John F. Kennedy airport a month ago as he was traveling to meet with other hackers to allegedly sell his stolen information, authorities say. But how exactly he hacked into the supposedly tightly secured computer systems in the first place is still unknown.
If convicted, the Malaysian man faces up to 10 years in prison on identity theft and fraud charges. According to authorities, he has already admitted to some of the crimes during questioning.
Linux has found a new home: in your wallet. The Linux Foundation is now offering a platinum rewards Linux credit card complete with the Tux penguin on the front.
The Linux Foundation receives a percentage of every purchase made with the card, as well $50 for every new card activation.
"All funds from the Visa card program will go directly towards providing community technical events and providing travel grants for open source community members in order to accelerate Linux innovation."
There are two designs to choose from, both with Tux on the front and both with the same features (no annual fee, zero liability protection, etc). However, it's only available to U.S. residents, which isn't likely to change "due to a lack of partners to work with to expand the program to other countries."
The ZeuS banking trojan is back making headlines, this time for hitting up infected machines with fake enrollment screens for both Visa and MasterCard credit cards.
"When you log into your bank, it says you have to enroll in Verified by Visa, that it's regulated now and you have to do it," explains Mickey Boodaei, CEO at Trusteer, a security firm.
This new variant sits in waiting until the potential victim logs into a list of targeted sites. Once they do, the ZeuS trojan uses this and other shenanigans to trick users into forking over not just credit card credentials, but Social Security numbers, personal identification numbers, and other personal info.
It can be irritating going through the process of getting a disputed charge removed from your credit card bill, but have you ever been overcharged to the tune of $23,138,855,308,184,500? That's exactly what some Visa card holders recently saw on their statement, which as CNN points out, is 2,007 times the size of the national debt. We suppose that's one way boost the economy.
We can't even fathom spending over $23 quadrillion in a single month, and neither could Josh Muszynski, a 22-year-old from New Hampshire who was panicked after discovering the 17-digit charge. After being put on hold for what he claims was two hours, Bank of America, the issuer of his Visa prepaid debit card, removed the exorbitant charge along with a $15 overdraft fee.
Visa blamed the glitch on a "temporary programming error at Visa Debit Processing Services, which caused some transactions to be inaccurately posted to a small number of Visa prepaid accounts." That "small number" includes fewer than 13,000 prepaid transactions, Visa said.
We wonder if anyone just sent in a check for the full amount.
For those of you that still have a Circuit City credit card in your wallet, fret not – the minds at Chase have decided to allow you to use that (still good) card at Best Buy!
In a letter from Chase, Circuit City cardholders were told, “Chase has arranged for you to be able to use your account at Best Buy for all of your consumer electronics needs… In May 2009, we will be sending you a replacement Best Buy branded credit card that you can begin to use as soon as you receive it. Your account number and all of your existing rates, fees and terms will remain the same, which means that any existing regular or promotional financing balances will be treated the same way they are today.”
So, good news! If you hopped on board the sinking boat, you’ll soon be taxied via life raft to the bigger, still floating boat.