Feeds

Citibank ATM fraud 'just tip of iceberg' - analyst

PIN block card scam fears grow

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

An ongoing ATM fraud problem that forced Citibank into reissuing an unspecified number of US credit and debit cards is only part of a larger ongoing threat, a leading analyst warns. Avivah Litan, a research director at Gartner, said that Citibank is only one of a number of victims and that the banking industry is "less than halfway through this latest scam, which will continue to affect large numbers of cardholders".

Citibank said it blocked PIN-based transactions of Citi-branded MasterCard cards in the UK, Russia and Canada to protect US customer accounts. It blamed the problem on a security breach involving an unspecified US retailer. Litan, by contrast, suggests the theft of PIN data is the more likely cause of the security flap. She adds that other US banks have been forced to reissue ATM cards after customers' details were compromised.

"Gartner believes that these combined bank actions reflect the largest PIN theft to date — and point to a new wave of 'PIN block' card fraud," Litan writes. If hackers broke into retailer servers and steal PIN blocks that represent encrypted PIN data as well as terminal encryption keys (typically stored on retailers' terminal controllers), they might be able to determine a cardholder's PIN and create counterfeit cards that enable them to withdraw cash at ATM machines.

Litan reckons that this - rather than a simple retailer breach - accounts for a recent rise in ATM fraud affecting US banks. "In this particular scam, the thieves probably also stole (likely from a retailer) magnetic-stripe data found on the back of ATM cards, which large banks typically validate," she adds.

The Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security standard prohibits the storage of PIN blocks and covers terminal operations. Gartner advises card issuers to follow this guidance. The analyst firm also has advice for enterprises, payment vendors and regulators which can be reviewed here. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Whitepapers

Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Protecting against web application threats using SSL
SSL encryption can protect server‐to‐server communications, client devices, cloud resources, and other endpoints in order to help prevent the risk of data loss and losing customer trust.