Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/08/14/bank_details_for_sale/

Brit bank details for sale in Lagos

Wipe those hard drives

By John Oates

Posted in Security, 14th August 2006 15:13 GMT

Account details from thousands of British citizens are being sold in Nigeria, fuelling the 419 scam and ID theft trade in the African country.

According to a BBC television programme due to be shown tonight, you can pick up a set of UK bank account details in Lagos for £20.

Nigerian fraudsters are getting the information from hard drives of PCs sent from the UK which don't have their hard drives properly wiped. Many of the hard drives had simply been picked up at local recycling sites in the UK, the programme claimed.

Computer users are advised to clear all details or remove the drive before donating computers. Just deleting the information is not enough.

In addition to disclosing their own confidential information, companies who let data on third parties (such as customers) loose could face penalties under data protection laws, the BBC warns.

Real Story is on BBC 1 at 7.30pm this evening (Monday 14 August).

More details here. ®