Two thousand credit card payment terminals stand to become infected with malware called Trinity point of sales.

Ten million credit cards were stolen by hackers, called Fin6, who may end up scoring $400 million. The cards were stolen from retail and hospitality businesses. If each card sells for $21 on secret carder shops, you can see how the hackers will rake in hundreds of millions of dollars.

As you may know, the U.S. is gradually switching over to chip cards. But it will be a while—a very long while—before magnetic strip cards are non-existent in America. Until then, these types of cards remain a favorite target for cyber thieves.

The methods that Fin6 used are technical, but suffice it to say, these hackers are pros. At this point, there has not been any way to stop this hacking group.

This is yet another example of the inherent vulnerability of the magnetic strip card, which, unlike in other industrialized nations, continues to be the main type of credit card in use in the U.S.

Protect yourself:

  • Go to “alerts/notifications” at your bank/cards website and sign up for emails/texts for every charge made.
  • Download your bank/cards mobile app and sign up for emails/texts for every charge made.
  • Check your statements frequently.
  • Federal law protects you from unauthorized charges made with your credit card number but you still have to dispute the charges.
  • In the event the credit card is in a thief’s hands, you’ll be liable, but only for a maximum of $50, provided you report the problem to the credit card company. However, in many cases a “zero liability” policy may kick in.
  • Debit cards fall under a different federal law than credit cards. Regulation E, the Electronic Fund Transfer Act, says after two days, you could be liable for up to $50. After 2 days liability jumps to 500.00. Beyond 60 days, you could be liable for all unauthorized transactions. Otherwise, federal rules are on the bank’s side.
  • Beyond 60 days, there’s likelihood you’ll never see your money again.

Robert Siciliano is an identity theft expert to BestIDTheftCompanys.com discussing identity theft prevention.

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