Monday, November 3, 2008
ClickandBuy Targeted By Fraudsters - Steer Clear
$1 charges from blizzard entertainments world of warcraft and clickandbuy.com
Are you seeing charge attempts on your credit card statement from blizzard ent*wow sub and clickandbuy.com (London based online payment provider)? We just recently had these show up on one of our business credit cards, and after online access to our account was denied we called in and our credit card company informed us that they suspected these were unauthorized charges. In particular, due to the small amount ($1), they appear to be charge attempts - that is, if the $1 charge had gone through, the perpetrator would then proceed to charge larger amounts, knowing that they could successfully charge the card.
How does credit card fraud happen?
There's a number of ways credit card fraud can occur, not the least of which is identity theft, where someone gets a hold of the right combination of personal information necessary to pose as you. Personal information subject to identity theft and fraud includes your name, address, phone number, bank and credit card numbers, social security number, etc. However, in this case we feel the charges were executed by random number generators. You'll notice that not all charging systems are secure - they don't all check for the same information - ie. name, number, expiration date, and security code. If any one of these items is missing, the transaction's level of security decreases significantly.
Credit card number generating software
In this event, and in other reported events we've come across since researching this issue, it appears that all that is necessary in some instances is correctly guessing your credit card number. The blizzard ent*wow sub appears to be from Blizzard Entertainment, developer of the popular World of Warcraft computer game franchise. In the online version of the game, customers are able to purchase subscriptions. The clickandbuy.com could be attached to any vendor that uses Click and Buy's online payment system. These include but are not limited to Apple iTunes, Skype, msn, T-Online, Electronic Arts, Meetic, Playboy, SanDisk, Yamaha, UNICEF and more.
Does your credit card company have fraud prevention measures in place?
If you are visiting this page because you have charges similar to these on your statement that you don't recognize, call your credit card company and put a hold on your card immediately, if you or they have not already done so, and have them send you a new card. In our case our credit card company recognized the clickandbuy.com charge as potential fraud (but not the blizzard one). When our account access was denied, we called in and answered security questions to a fraud prevention agent that was able to answer our questions and help us track down the problem. Fortunately, a hold was placed on our card automatically when the clickandbuy.com charge was attempted, and no further charges were allowed. Unfortunately, not all credit card companies have the same security measures in place. We asked how many of these incidents they receive and they said 5-6 per day. That means these charges are being attempted constantly, and odds are your card will be hit with one sooner or later. Call your company and make sure identity theft and fraud prevention procedures are in place now.
Read Privacy Crisis: Identity Theft to start protecting yourself
There's tons of services out there that offer "identity theft" protection programs for recurring monthly fees. But if you know what you're doing you don't necessarily need all those extra cost services. After all, why should you have to pay more to protect something that should be protected by the company that is in control of your information in the first place? We do recommend, however, that you take the time to download and read Privacy Crisis. It's an ebook (electronic book) that shows you how to prevent identity theft. Click here to check it out now. No recurring fees - once you have the book you'll have good knowledge of how the system works, and you'll feel more comfortable knowing how to keep your identity safe and protected.