Feeds

ID sales sites start loss leader marketing programme

Journalists find thousands of IDs online

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

The Information Commissioners' in-tray got a little bigger today as it confirmed it would be investigating a series of ID trading sites unearthed by journalists.

The Times screamed today that "the financial details of tens of thousands of Britons" were being sold on the internet.

The paper detailed how it had been able to download banking information for 32 people, including account numbers, PINS, and security codes, "without spending a single penny". The data, including that of a deputy judge, was apparently offered as a free taster by the ID traders.

It's no secret that personal details are being traded online, although the fact that criminals are now offering free samples is a new wrinkle.

A spokeswoman for the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) confirmed the paper had passed on the details of its investigation, and said: "We'll be looking at the evidence."

She pointed out the ICO had previously called for custodial sentences for criminal trading of details.

Given the ICO's remit, the organisation's interest would presumably be in how the data escaped into the wild in the first place.

Criminal investigations would be down to the police, who would also take the lead in shaking down sites which are based abroad – it seems unlikely such sites are being hosted in the Thames Corridor.

Unfortunately, UK police are not falling over themselves to investigate card fraud as it is. A change in the law earlier this year means victims of card crime are now advised to go to their banks, rather than to the police.

The recent release of 25 million IDs into the wild courtesy of HMRC might be expected to further complicate matters, both for consumers looking to keep their IDs out of fraudsters' hands, for the ICO, and for authorities investigating fraud.

Of course, we could always look on the bright side, and hypothesise that the UK government's decision to flood the market with IDs will drive prices down, encouraging some ID traders to pack up shop. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
14 antivirus apps found to have security problems
Vendors just don't care, says researcher, after finding basic boo-boos in security software
'Things' on the Internet-of-things have 25 vulnerabilities apiece
Leaking sprinklers, overheated thermostats and picked locks all online
iWallet: No BONKING PLEASE, we're Apple
BLE-ding iPhones, not NFC bonkers, will drive trend - marketeers
Only '3% of web servers in top corps' fully fixed after Heartbleed snafu
Just slapping a patched OpenSSL on a machine ain't going to cut it, we're told
Multipath TCP speeds up the internet so much that security breaks
Black Hat research says proposed protocol will bork network probes, flummox firewalls
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Israel's Iron Dome missile tech stolen by Chinese hackers
Corporate raiders Comment Crew fingered for attacks
Tor attack nodes RIPPED MASKS off users for 6 MONTHS
Traffic confirmation attack bared users' privates - but to whom?
Roll out the welcome mat to hackers and crackers
Security chap pens guide to bug bounty programs that won't fail like Yahoo!'s
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.