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FTC: Scammers Stole Millions Using Micro Charges to Credit Cards

Jun 29, 2010, 12:32 (2 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Kim Zetter)

"A gang of unknown thieves has stolen nearly $10 million using micro charges made to more than a million credit and debit cards in an elaborate multiyear scam, according to a lawsuit filed by the Federal Trade Commission in March.

"The fraudulent charges went unnoticed by the majority of card owners because they were made in small amounts — ranging from 20 cents to $10 — that bypassed fraud detection algorithms, and because the scammers typically made only one fraudulent charge per card.

"The sophisticated scam, which was first reported by IDG News Service, began in 2006 and was stifled only recently after the FTC succeeded to shut down merchant accounts the scammers were using and halt the activities of at least 14 money mules who were laundering illegal proceeds for the gang."

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