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NEWS: Largest Bank Data Security Failure in History Occurs in New York

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posted on Apr, 29 2005 @ 01:23 AM
Hundreds of thousands of New York area bank customers have been victimized in what appears to be the largest breach of data security in banking history. The perpetrators allegedly stole customer information from bank computers and sold that information, through a middleman, to collection agencies and lawyers. The lawyers then used the information to fraudulently seize assets belonging to the victims. The mastermind behind the scheme, Orazio Lembo, was discovered to be in possession of this information when police raided his computers on unrelated charges. So far, 9 people have been arrested and charged.
The eight other individuals allegedly involved in the scheme include employees of Bank Of America, Commerce Bank, Wachovia Bank, PNC Bank and one who worked for the New Jersey Department of Labor. Most were paid $10 for each account they tapped into to acquire bank statements and employment records.

Margarete Meyers, Bank Customer: "To think that for such a low price they would break the laws of their employment, and it's unethical and everything else. I'm really sorry to hear about it."

Orazio Lembo lived in a high rise apartment building on Prospect Avenue in Hackensack where he ran a firm advertised as DRL Associates. Police had gone there to investigate a possible check scandal and when they tapped into 13 of Lembo's computers they discovered the major breach of banking security.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

It's amazing what sort of damage a few dedicated criminals can cause. If this was just 9 individuals (I suspect it may have been more), they did enough damage for 900. The process of sorting the information stolen, adressing the usage of it that may have occured, identifying those who received it, and bringing all the relevant charges is a prosecutor's nightmare. They would need a dedicated team of several hundred lawyers and clerks just to make headway through the hundreds of thousands of names. Contacting the victims alone is a daunting task, nevermind involving them in the process of prosecution, or ironing out restitution.

This is going to be an absolute disaster, even now that the perpetrators have been caught! Once information gets out, it can't be put away again. That data is free now, and it will spread like monkey pox.

This goes beyond anything previously experienced. I imagine the D.A. is enjoying several stiff drinks right now, trying to figure out where to go from here. We got the guys..great. Now what? I can't begin to imagine how this situation will be resolved. I suppose it will just be swept under the rug and forgotten before too long. Meanwhile, the victims receive no justice. That would be shameful indeed. Unfortunately, I see it as the most likely outcome.

[edit on 29-4-2005 by WyrdeOne]

posted on Apr, 29 2005 @ 03:23 AM
banking needs to stay away from the internet.those bad guys out there are gonna keep this stuff up.i beg the worlds banks to stop the access of internet banking.its to unsecure from my ponit of view.....

posted on Apr, 29 2005 @ 03:33 AM
Glad I don't have any money!

So soon after the announcement of the governments own hacking corps., hmmm

This could be the start of some shortened banking weeks?

posted on Apr, 29 2005 @ 03:38 AM
Actually, it had nothing to do with the internet as far as I have read.

The ringleader recruited employees of the banks to steal the data from computers where they worked. It was an inside job, no hacking required.

As far as internet security, I dare say nearly every bank in America is pretty well protected. The hilarious thing, of course, is they have little in the way of physical security when it comes to the data of their customers. Customers trust the bank, and the bank takes that trust, turns around, and gives it to their employees. When the employees prove untrustworthy, everybody suffers.

I imagine this will have a very negative effect on the perception of security in the minds of the customers - even those not affected. Just hearing about this story is enough for most people to seriously consider putting their money under the mattress.

posted on Apr, 29 2005 @ 01:26 PM
Like that scene in the movie "Sneakers" want to bring down a bank, you start a rumor saying the bank is shaky.

...people hear the rumor and withdraw their money

...the bank becomes financially shaky and fails.


posted on Apr, 30 2005 @ 03:25 AM
Well, let's examine motive then. Who would want to destroy Bank Of America, Commerce Bank, Wachovia Bank, PNC Bank? Who benefits?

Chase maybe? That's my first bet.

Any other ideas?

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