It appears that back in late 2007 a Russian hacker breached the ATM server belonging to Houston based Cardtronics and monitored transactions from 7-Eleven cash machines long enough to capture thousands of account numbers and PINs. This information was then sent to people around the U.S. who burned the information onto blank mag-stripe cards and then used those cards to hit Citibank ATM machines on the New York area for about five months.
Citibank reported the breach to the FBI in February of this year at which point it was also learned that the U.S. Secret Service had been investigating a Russian by the name of Rakushchynets who they were able to tie to the Citibank heist. With the help of two previously captured cashers from the group The FBI were able to arrest two other members, Andrey Baranets and Aleksandr Desevoh.
Then in May Aleksandr Aleksiev was picked up during a stakeout while he was trying to withdraw money from a Citibank ATM. This was the same machine on the Upper East Side where $180,000 had been stolen previously.The majority of the money taken in by the group was funnelled back to Russia. While Citibank hasn’t commented on the breach they were quick to say that the Citibank customers whose accounts had been targetted wouldn’t be held responsible for fraudulent withdrawals.
Well isn’t that nice of them.
[via Kevin Paulsen – Threat Level]