Hackers of India

The underground Ecosystem of Credit Card frauds

 Abhinav Singh 


Presentation Material


Point of Sale (POS) malwares have been stealing the limelight this year. They have been the elemental factor in some of the biggest breaches uncovered in the past couple of years.

This talk will cover the aspects of what happens after these details have been sent to the malware authors. The entire ecosystem of credit card frauds can be broadly classified into these three steps:

  1. Purchase of raw details and dumps
  2. Converting them to plastic cash/cards
  3. Shop! Shop! Shop!

The focus of this talk will be on the above-mentioned points and how they form an organized network of cyber-crime.

There have been talks on the POS malware and the big breaches that it has caused. We know that millions of details have been stolen, but the aftermath is hardly discussed. It is important to understand the complete fraud ecosystem if we have to kill its roots. The talk will involve details of forums, which have only privileged access, internal details of the buyers/sellers, personal chats, and IRC encounters that makes it unique and research oriented.

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The speaker discusses the prevalence of fraud in countries like Indonesia, I ndia and Thailand, to due to ineffective banking systems. They also answer questions about EMV chips and their limited ability to protect against fraud. The speaker explains that while EMV chips store encrypted information, on the card, this encryption is broken once the card is used at a POS terminal, making it vulnerable to malware attacks.

The speaker also addresses the use of algorithms like Luhn’s algorithm to validate credit card numbers, but notes that this does not guarantee the card is active or usable. They explain how fraudsters obtain CVV information through keylogging or hacking e-commerce websites, and how this complete information about an individual (known as “fulls”) is valuable on the black market.

Finally, the speaker touches on exclusive forums and shops on T networks that sell real information, and how they use referrals, payment, and encryption to prevent security researchers and financial institutions from accessing their activities.