Inside A Net Extortion Ring

from the for-fun,-not-profit dept

MSNBC has a big article about a group of hackers called Zilterio that have hacked into a number of e-commerce sites and then try to blackmail them for money. The group is suddenly looking for publicity, so that companies take them more seriously, and thus granted MSNBC an email interview. They explain that they make most of their money from credit card fraud, but breaking into e-commerce sites and emailing all their customers to tell them their personal data has been compromised is “just a hobby”. While there are four known cases of break-ins by the group, the group spokesperson says many more have been done, and nine have agreed to pay up for “protection”. In exchange, the group now “protects” those sites from further breakins (your typical street-level organized crime policy moving online, I guess). Of course, as with any such story, it’s impossible to tell what’s true and what’s being made up.

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