Feeds

Crackers gain sight of up to 5m credit cards

Visa and Mastercard reassure punters they won't lose out

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Using blade systems to cut costs and sharpen efficiencies

Computer crackers have obtained details of up to five million US Visa and MasterCard accounts, the two firms admitted yesterday.

CNN reports that attackers gained the details after compromising systems that process credit card transactions. Technical details of how the attack was carried out are so far thin on the ground amidst conflicting reports on the scale of the problem.

CNN reports details of up to 2.2 million Visa and Mastercard accounts have been accessed, while Reuters reckons up to five million accounts have been viewed by crims.

Although none of the cards have been used fraudulently, at least according to Visa spokesman John Adams, banks have been alerted and a major withdrawal/recall program can be expected.

Fortunately both companies have zero-liability policies for their US customers. This means if the cards are used fraudulently, customers will not be liable for unauthorised charges.

It's unclear which card issuing banks are affected by the problem, though early reports suggest the problem is nationwide.

Citizens Bank, a financial services firm in Northeastern USA, closed the accounts of "8,800 customers whose [Mastercard] card numbers had been accessed". Bank spokeswoman Pamela Crawley told CNN that accounts were "safe" for the possibility of further misuse.

The FBI has been called in to investigate the case. ®

Related Stories

E-fraud costs retailers millions
Feds break massive identity fraud
Egghead credit card hack: serious questions remain

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

More from The Register

next story
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
NEW, SINISTER web tracking tech fingerprints your computer by making it draw
Have you been on YouPorn lately, perhaps? White House website?
LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs
Blow to bit-spitter 'tis but a flesh wound, claim team
Black Hat anti-Tor talk smashed by lawyers' wrecking ball
Unmasking hidden users is too hot for Carnegie-Mellon
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
Don't look, Snowden: Security biz chases Tails with zero-day flaws alert
Exodus vows not to sell secrets of whistleblower's favorite OS
Own a Cisco modem or wireless gateway? It might be owned by someone else, too
Remote code exec in HTTP server hands kit to bad guys
prev story

Whitepapers

Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.