Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Former waiter charged with stealing credit card numbers.

Former waiter charged with stealing credit card numbers.

A former waiter at a TGI Fridays restaurant in Laurel was indicted on charges he copied and sold the numbers of 73 credit cards, Prince George’s authorities said.

It really should not be any great surprise that we see these types of reports.  Apparently this guy’s mistake, which led to the discovery and his arrest, was not realizing who he was stealing from.  A couple of Secret Service agents ate at the restaurant and noticed the unauthorized charges.

What may surprise many more is how common this type of theft is and how often it occurs.  Sometimes a credit card is stolen and the offender charges up a storm.  That is relatively easy to spot on your statement or alert from your credit card company. 

What is much more prevalent are small, but numerous charges.  Small, like less than $9.  You read that correct, small charges are unlikely to be seen and even if they are discovered, they are too small to prosecute.  Why bother to steal a small amount?  Credit Card theft is a high volume low margin theft.  Steal lots of card numbers and charge lots of small amounts.  This adds up and ultimately makes everything more expensive.

There are many aspects to crimes like these.  First and foremost, the business management has public relations issue to contend with.  Will customers choose another establishment?  For how long?  How much business will be lost?  After the bad press settles a good many people will forget the incident, unless they were the one of the one’s affected.

In general a significant percentage of breaches are due to human error or negligence.  Until there is a time when having the information is of no value, people without will take from those who have.  Business tries to build a better mouse trap and the mice get smarter.

Dolvin Consulting and Cyber Security Auditors and Administrators (CSA2) work with companies to help them determine their risk exposure and build a Written Information Security Plan (WISP) and store that plan and other critical documents in a secure WISP-Vault.  You may never be able to eliminate all risks, but you can be prepared.  Perhaps as punishment or perhaps as a revenue stream, Government regulations are becoming more stringent and the fines are growing. 

You need someone knowledgeable on your side to help you manage your risk.  We would like to help you before trouble comes a knocking, but we also have experts in post-breach situations.  Do not wait, Contact Dolvin today.

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