Credit card details cost less than can of cola


Online credit card theftOnline criminals are exchanging consumers' credit card and personal information for just 50p -- cheaper than a can of cola, a new report has revealed.

According to IT security company Symantec, the ease with which fraudsters are able to steal personal information is leading to a price war in the "underground economy", with data now being sold at unprecedentedly low prices.

"As above ground the world economy spirals, the underground economy has never been healthier," Symantec chief scientist Guy Bunker explained.

UK payments association Apacs revealed last month that internet, phone and mail-order card fraud increased by 13% last year.

Additionally, Symantec recorded 1.6m "malicious threats" in 2008, 60% of the total the company has recorded in its history.

Mr Bunker warned that this trend "highlights the seriousness of this rising threat and the need for us all to be educated about how to best protect ourselves, both at home and at work".


Published: 17 April 2009