Friday, April 22, 2011

Seattle Police Say 'wardrivers' Are Hitting Small Businesses

Robert McMillan writes on PC World:

Seattle police are investigating a group of criminals who they say have been cruising around town in a black Mercedes stealing credit card data by tapping into wireless networks belonging to area businesses.

The group has been at it for about five years, according to an affidavit signed by Detective Chris Hansen, a fraud investigator with the Seattle Police Department.

"A number of area small and medium-sized businesses have been targeted in these network intrusions, which have also involved a pattern of financial and personal identifying information (such as credit card information)," Hansen wrote in his affidavit, dated April 13. He declined to comment for this story.

Hansen believes the group has been "wardriving" the Seattle area in a customized 1988 Mercedes Benz, looking for companies using an unsecure Wi-Fi standard called Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP). WEP has well-documented security flaws and has been considered for years to be unsecure, but was widely used in routers built between about 2000 and 2005. Many consumers and small businesses still use it.

More here.


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