Darknet fraudsters continue to reinvent themselves with every day. Lately, there has been a booming trade of stolen bank card information on the dark web.
Law enforcement agencies have heavily prevailed upon the perpetrators of these crimes, and the trend had started taking a downward spiral.
It seems their relief might be short-lived, though. A group of Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking fraudsters, collectively known as “Bineros,” is meeting on darknet forums to share insights on the ways to operate a fake bank card fraud campaign. The fake cards are being used successfully to make subscriptions and buy products online.
Fake Payment Cards
Every card has a bank identification number (BIN) that is used to seek validation from the back when you try to use it to make purchases online. The group is using the BINs from a particular bank to generate fake card details.
By design, BINs are intended to prevent fraud. However, these criminals are using them to bypass the check-out security systems of certain ecommerce and subscription sites.
It is not clear how they are doing yet. Flashpoint, a research firm that has been on the case for some time now, indicated in a report that they are using a certain type of tool to generate the fake cards using specific BINs.
It is emerging that the Bineros cybercriminals prefer using the fake cards, instead of the real stolen cards. The fake cards can take advantage of the vulnerability of the security systems of some sites, while they do not really exist. This means they cannot be traced back to anyone.
Members of the Bineros cybercrime group have chat rooms and social sites on the dark web where they exchange ideas on how to pry their illegal trade. This is a rather worrisome trend as more people are being inducted into the vice.
Just like the data theft menace, this seems poised to be yet another headache for law enforcement officers.
Bineros majorly operate in Spanish and Portuguese languages. They are always on the lookout for vulnerable systems that can allow irregular validation of payment cards. It is now upon the relevant institutions to take caution and measures to avoid falling prey to the fraudsters. There are even tutorials on how to go about the process on the said social platforms.
Subscription entertainment sites are part of the soft targets of the group. Emerging ecommerce sites are a target too. The operators of the sites need to work hand in hand with the relevant banks to ensure the security of the checkout system is top-notch.
The group is not necessarily hacking the systems. They are just on the lookout for weak points that they can take advantage of.
According to the research by Flashpoint, the trend is likely to persist and even draw in new fraudsters.
The process is not sophisticated, and the efforts by the group to educate their community about these dubious schemes mean very many people could easily get involved in a short while.
What’s Next for Law Enforcement?
It will be interesting to see how law enforcement agencies will deal with the situation. This looks like a new challenge to them.
It is easy to give them the benefit of the doubt, given that they have had some level of success in dealing with the existing forms of cybercrime. The fact that the process is not technically sophisticated means it should be easier for law enforcement agencies to deal with the vice.
It is not clear what steps have been taken to address the fraud so far. No major thefts have been reported so far either.
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