Friday, October 31, 2008

New York Coder Charged With Helping TJ Maxx Hacker

Kevin Poulsen writes on Threat Level:

A New York man was hit with a federal conspiracy charge this week for allegedly lending his programming expertise to the head of a hacking gang accused of stealing and selling over 40 million credit and debit card numbers.

Stephen Watt, 25, allegedly customized a packet-sniffing program called "blabla" for use by Albert Gonzalez, a former Secret Service informant who was indicted earlier this year as the mastermind of a 2005-2007 intrusion into clothier T.J. Maxx, as well as breaches at BJ’s Wholesale Club, Boston Market, Barnes & Noble, Sports Authority, Forever 21, DSW and OfficeMax.

Gonzalez allegedly used sniffers to scoop up credit and debit card numbers from hacked networks as they sped from cash registers to processing servers. Watt modified blabla "on diverse dates" to meet Gonzalez's evolving needs, according to the one-count federal information [.pdf] filed in federal court in Boston on Wednesday.

More here.


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