US seizes websites in stolen credit card crackdown

Apr 26, 2012
US authorities have ordered the seizure of 36 websites engaged in selling and distributing stolen credit card numbers, officials said Thursday.

US authorities have ordered the seizure of 36 websites engaged in selling and distributing stolen credit card numbers, officials said Thursday.

Visitors to the website, now in the custody of the federal government, are now greeted by a seizure banner under the FBI and Justice Department operation run in coordination with Britain's Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) and other international .

Under Operation , made undercover purchases of , at the suspect websites.

The sites are known as Automated Vending Carts, (AVC) which allow visitors to purchase stolen credit card numbers online using a virtual "shopping cart."

The banks that issued the credit card numbers, including , Sun Trust and Capital One, confirmed that the websites were not authorized to sell the numbers. Authorities obtained seizures orders from a federal magistrate judge in the Eastern District of Virginia.

"The websites we are targeting today were commercial outlets for stolen credit card information," Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer said in a statement.

"By making this information available on the Internet, these websites facilitated fraud on credit card holders around the world."

Some AVC websites allow buyers to choose the type of credit card number to purchase, along with the account's country of origin and the state in which the account holder lives. Through the sites, sellers can traffic stolen credit card information without communicating directly with buyers.

"Countless lives are thrown into financial turmoil because of these websites," said US Attorney Neil MacBride.

"With a few simple clicks, thousands of stolen credit card numbers can be bought or sold to fraudsters anywhere in the world."

In addition to SOCA, other international partners in the operation included Britain's Dedicated Cheque and Plastic Crime Unit, the Australian Federal Police, the German Bundeskriminalamt, the Macedonian Interior Ministry's Cyber Crime Unit, Ukraine's Internal Affairs Ministry, Romania's Interior Ministry and the Dutch High-Tech .

Explore further: 'Map spam' puts Google in awkward place

Related Stories

Credit card hacker sentenced to 10 years in prison

Jul 23, 2011

Rogelio Hackett, who stole more than half a million credit card numbers used to rack up nearly $40 million in illicit debt, was sentenced Friday to 10 years in prison and fined $100,000.

Visa, MasterCard scramble after massive data breach

Mar 30, 2012

Credit card giants Visa and MasterCard were scrambling on Friday to thwart cyber crooks who looted a massive trove of precious account data, evidently from a payment processor in New York.

Alleged Russian cybercriminal charged in New York court

Jan 18, 2012

The Justice Department announced indictments against two Russians Tuesday for allegedly hacking into computers of US financial institutions to steal credit card numbers and stock information before running up bills.

Recommended for you

Facebook rolls out video calls on Messenger

6 hours ago

Facebook on Monday began rolling out video calling on its Messenger mobile application, enabling face-to-face conversations among users of the app around the world.

Tinder, Vice honored in online Webby awards

9 hours ago

The online dating app Tinder was this year's "breakout" Internet service while bad-boy news website Vice Media got multiple honors in the "Webby" awards announced Monday.

'Map spam' puts Google in awkward place

Apr 24, 2015

Google was re-evaluating its user-edited online map system Friday after the latest embarrassing incident—an image of an Android mascot urinating on an Apple logo.

Google search mobile switch a revolution for some

Apr 24, 2015

Google's latest Internet revolution this week saw the web giant modify its search algorithm to favour mobile-friendly sites, in a bid to upstage Apple that US media branded a "mobilegeddon".

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.