As China moves to payment cards, cybercriminals follow

Trend Micro says there's high interest in card fraud as more people move away from cash

As China increasingly embraces payment cards over cash, Trend Micro is seeing an uptick in cybercriminal activity aimed at card fraud.

The security company published a new study of the Chinese underground cybercriminal market, which shows a strong interest in ways to capture payment card details.

"Cybercriminals quickly jumped on the noncash payment bandwagon," wrote report author Lion Gu of Trend Micro's Forward-Looking Threat Research Team.

The market for such tools has been strong in countries that heavily use payment cards, so it's probably not surprising that the trade would rise in China.

But it does mean that retailers there may begin face to facing an increasing risk from data breaches that have stung companies such as Target, Home Depot and many others.

One website found by Gu offered point-of-sale devices that had been modified in order to send payment card details captured from a card's magnetic stripe over SMS to fraudsters.

The way the devices are sold -- from the criminals to resellers to retailers and then onto businesses -- means some in the supply chain may not know the devices have been altered. It's also advantageous for the cybercriminals, Gu wrote. 

"Cybercriminals do not even have to physically collect stolen information from installed devices, allowing them greater flexibility and convenience," he wrote.

ATM skimmers are also sold on some business-to-business online marketplaces for around ¥4,000 (US$630). These are usually devices that fit over an ATM's card slot and can record card details. Gu wrote some come with PIN pad overlays, which record a card's secret number.

Another product Gu found is aimed at people who have brief access to a person's payment card, a so-called "pocket skimmer" 

"An unscrupulous store staff member can, for instance, swipe an unwitting customer’s card on a pocket skimmer in order to steal track data that he/she can later use for fraud," he wrote.

The pocket skimmer doesn't need a network connection or an external power supply. It can collect the details of up to 2,048 cards, which can be downloaded to a computer later with a USB cable.

 

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeremy Kirk

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?