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Prosecutors say man stole 130M credit card numbers
WASHINGTON – Federal prosecutors on Monday charged a Miami man with the largest case of credit and debit card data theft ever in the United States, accusing the one-time government informant of swiping 130 million accounts on top of 40 million he stole previously.
Albert Gonzalez, 28, broke his own record for identity theft by hacking into retail networks, according to prosecutors, though they say his illicit computer exploits ended when he went to jail on charges stemming from an earlier case.
Gonzalez is a former informant for the U.S. Secret Service who helped the agency hunt hackers, authorities say. The agency later found out that he had also been working with criminals and feeding them information on ongoing investigations, even warning off at least one individual, according to authorities.
Gonzalez, who is already in jail awaiting trial in a hacking case, was indicted Monday in New Jersey and charged with conspiring with two other unnamed suspects to steal the private information. Prosecutors say the goal was to sell the stolen data to others.
How much of the data was sold and then used to make fraudulent charges is unclear. Investigators in such cases say it is usually impossible to quantify the impact of such thefts on account holders.
Prosecutors say Gonzalez, who is known online as "soupnazi," targeted customers of convenience store giant 7-Eleven Inc. and supermarket chain Hannaford Brothers, Co. Inc. He also targeted Heartland Payment Systems, a New Jersey-based card payment processor.
According to the indictment, Gonazalez and his two Russian coconspirators would hack into corporate computer networks and secretly place "malware," or malicious software, that would allow them backdoor access to the networks later to steal data.
Gonzalez faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted of the new charges. His lawyer did not immediately return a call for comment.
Gonzalez is awaiting trial next month in New York for allegedly helping hack the computer network of the national restaurant chain Dave and Buster's.
Originally posted by havok
Its not the Guiness Book of World Records that should be notified.
Its my savings account.
I'm just kidding. I bet this is a setup to say that credit cards are unsafe and there needs to be a safer way to pay.
That is a ton of info, and could be used to become very wealthy. But, fortunately for all of those people, he got caught.
Christopher Scott, Damon Patrick Toey, Maksym Yastremskiy, J.J., J.W., and others known and unknown to the grand jury, conspired...