Thursday, November 25, 2010

What's Better Than Turkey on Thanksgiving?

A win over the Cincinnati Bengals by my NY Jets! Yes!

Now looking forward to the Monday Night Football match-up between the Jets and the Patriots on December 6th.

J-E-T-S, Jets, Jets, Jets!

- ferg

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

- ferg

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Mark Fiore: TSA Turkey

More Mark Fiore brilliance.

Via The San Francisco Chronicle.

Happy Thanksgiving.

- ferg

DoJ Seeks to Broaden Patriot Act on Asset Freezes

Joseph Palazzolo writes in the WSJ:

After two losses in court, the Justice Department is pushing Congress to broaden a provision of the Patriot Act that allows U.S. judges to freeze assets linked to foreign crimes.

In recent cases in New York and Washington, D.C., federal judges ruled the Justice Department acted prematurely on requests by foreign governments for restraining orders against hundreds of millions of dollars in assets allegedly controlled by a Russian businessman and a Brazilian banker, both ensnared in criminal investigations in their native countries.

The cases have raised questions about the extent to which U.S. prosecutors and courts should rely on the legal processes of foreign governments, particularly in countries with unproven or uneven criminal justice systems. The issue has taken on more weight amid a global trend for greater international cooperation in law enforcement, spurred in large part by the U.S.

The courts ruled the department may seek to have assets frozen based on a judgment from a foreign court, but not on allegations of violations of foreign law or temporary orders by foreign courts.

That reading of the law, prosecutors argued in pleadings, could hamper "significant national interests" by undermining the Justice Department's ability to assist foreign governments during—rather than after—criminal investigations.

More here.

Teen Gang Admits Huge Zeus Trojan Fraud

John E. Dunn writes on

In a crime story that sounds like an Internet update of the Italian Job, a gang of British teens have admitted being behind an online forum that stole and marketed stolen credit card numbers and bank details worth an estimated £12 million ($18 million).

The main admin of the forum,, is said to have been Nicholas Webber, who was 18 at the time of his arrest in 2009 after he tried to pay a £1,000 hotel bill in London using stolen card details.

After his arrest with an alleged accomplice, 18-year old Ryan Thomas, police examined his laptop and found 100,000 UK and US credit card numbers. The pair subsequently jumped bail before being re-arrested at Gatwick Airport in January 2010, after flying back to the UK from Spain.

Webber and Thomas have now pleaded guilty to running the forum, while a third, Gary Kelly, 20 at the time of the crimes, has admitted culling numbers from botnet PCs infected with the Zeus banking password-stealing Trojan. Two other defendants in their early twenties have pleaded guilty to acting as money mules.

More here.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Escrow Co. Sues Bank Over $440K Cyber Theft

Brian Krebs:

An escrow firm in Missouri is suing its bank to recover $440,000 that organized cyber thieves stole in an online robbery earlier this year, claiming the bank’s reliance on passwords to secure high-dollar transactions failed to measure up to federal e-banking security guidelines.

The attack against Springfield, Mo. based title insurance provider Choice Escrow and Land Title LLC began late in the afternoon on St. Patrick’s Day, when hackers who had stolen the firm’s online banking ID and password used the information to make a single unauthorized wire transfer for $440,000 to a corporate bank account in Cyprus.

The following day, when Choice Escrow received a notice about the transfer from its financial institution — Tupelo, Miss. based BancorpSouth Inc. — it contacted the bank to dispute the transfer. But by the close of business on March 18, the bank was distancing itself from the incident and its customer, said Jim A. Payne, director of business development for Choice Escrow.

“They said, ‘We’re going to get back to you, we’re working on it,” Payne said. “What they really were doing is contacting their legal department and figuring out what they were going to say to us. It took them until 5 p.m. to call us back, and they basically said, ‘Sorry, we can’t help you. This is your responsibility.”

More here.

Woman Admits Aiding Firm in Selling Fake Chips to U.S. Military

Robert McMillan writes on ComputerWorld:

A Florida woman has pleaded guilty to charges that she helped her employer sell counterfeit computer chips for use by the U.S. military

Stephanie McCloskey, 38, was an administrator at VisionTech Components, a Clearwater, Florida, company that sold military-grade integrated circuits designed to handle extreme temperatures and the shocks and bumps of battlefield use. McCloskey pleaded guilty Friday to a single conspiracy charge. She faces up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Prosecutors say that VisionTech did more than $15.8 million in business over a three-year period, doctoring and then selling counterfeit integrated circuits imported from Hong Kong and China.

More here.