Tracking the Cybercrime Trail

Cybercrimes are those offenses that involve a network and computer. Cybercrimes occur when a computer is used to commit a crime or if it’s the target. These crimes often target a nation’s financial or security sector.

In the article, credit card associations and issuers noticed a rising delinquency happening over the past four months. They looked for information and found common points that led them to the idea that a single company was the source of the said fraud. Forensic examiners were called to help in the situation, and the company they suspected to be the source were asked to be in full cooperation. Ubizen, the forensic examiners were tasked to investigate a security breach that was said to be happening in the credit card associations’ and issuers’ network.

The primary goal of Ubizen was to locate and conclude the source and full scope of the fraud that has been going on. These forensic examiners did their research regarding Company A, the company they supposed was the source of the breach. Company A runs electronic payments and wireless transactions. Ubizen studied how the company operates and the processes that their services use. After thorough investigation, the forensic examiners figured out that the credit cards causing the fraud were duplicated ones. The duplicated credit cards had authentic account numbers but were illegally reproduced. The criminal got access to the account information found in the magnetic stripe of the credit card. The investigation of the examiners led them to the conclusion that the criminal was operating this fraud by stealing data in huge sets hence several credit card information have been used. Ubizen was able to trace how the criminal was doing his infringements; through Company A’s server. Through this server, the criminal was able to gain access to Company A’s network and embezzle necessary data to commit such crime. The forensic examiners then with the help of Company A began planning on how to figure out who and where this criminal was coming from. With these findings, the team substantiated that a security breach was indeed going on, and for quite some time already at that.

As their goal to find out the source of the fraud was already completed, the next step was locating the person behind this cybercrime. The team sought help from the FBI to track the hacker. They set a trap in order to get hold of the criminal’s activities. A system was set up where in they can see in actual time when the criminal is accessing Company A’s network system. Through this, the hacker’s access attempts to get hold of any data or information from Company A was monitored. They had a program called Tripwire that gave them signal when a change occurs in the system. But with the large traffic in the network, the team needed another plan in order to immediately track the hacker. Luckily, the criminal continued his law-breaking deeds by copying information that the team had set up and they were able to locate the criminal. The hacker was found to be a college guy who knows his ways through computer networks and systems. The forensic examiner team preserved all data gathered that will then be used during trial.

This event demonstrated a complex cybercrime that proved to be possible. The offender who was still in college may not be fit to be in the criteria of such an intricate cybercrime. But this incident proved that with the computer and network system knowledge, a system as multifaceted as those of credit card companies can be hacked. Several recommendations have been given to Company A in order to better tighten the security of their network system. An internal IT team that will solely focus on security of the company’s most vital information should be formed. This case was a great illustration how forensic examiners, private companies, and law enforcement such as FBI can work hand in hand in getting to the bottom of the crime and eventually solving all other stems integrated in the breach.

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