Feeds

Man accused of siphoning $50,000 in micro-payments from Schwab, E-trade

King of the Hill dethroned

High performance access to file storage

A California man has been charged with multiple counts of fraud after allegedly siphoning $50,000 from online brokerage houses E-trade and Schwab.com in micro-payments over a six-month period.

Kevin Poulsen of Wired News reports here that Michael Largent of Plumas Lake, California, is accused of using an automated script to open 58,000 online brokerage accounts that were linked to a handful of online bank accounts.

Largent then allegedly prompted E-trade and Schwab to send huge numbers of deposits between two cents and $1 to the accounts. Online brokerages frequently send such "micro-deposits" to verify that account details of new customers are correct. Largent's script had a penchant for cartoon characters: Accounts bore the name of Hank Hill and Rusty Shackelford, of Fox TV's King of the Hill and Marvel Comic's Johnny Blaze.

Largent is free on bail. He was charged with four counts each of computer fraud, wire fraud and mail fraud.

Largent's undoing came as a result of the USA Patriot Act, which requires financial businesses to verify the identity of their customers. In January, Schwab discovered that more than 5,000 accounts were tied to bogus information. The US Secret Service uncovered at least 11,385 Schwab accounts in the name of one Speed Apex. They were accessed using one of five IP addresses that were all traced back to Largent's AT&T internet account. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Parent gabfest Mumsnet hit by SSL bug: My heart bleeds, grins hacker
Natter-board tells middle-class Britain to purée its passwords
Web data BLEEDOUT: Users to feel the pain as Heartbleed bug revealed
Vendors and ISPs have work to do updating firmware - if it's possible to fix this
OpenSSL Heartbleed: Bloody nose for open-source bleeding hearts
Bloke behind the cockup says not enough people are helping crucial crypto project
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
Experian subsidiary faces MEGA-PROBE for 'selling consumer data to fraudster'
US attorneys general roll up sleeves, snap on gloves
Oz bank in comedy Heartbleed blog FAIL
Bank: 'We are now safely patched.' Customers: 'You were using OpenSSL?'
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.