Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Hackers steal large sum from escrow company -- Pasadena, CA

A total of $465,000 was recently stolen from California-based Village View Escrow via 26 consecutive wire transfers.

"Owner Michelle Marisco said her financial institution at the time -- Professional Business Bank of Pasadena, Calif. -- normally notified her by e-mail each time a new wire was sent out of the company’s escrow account," writes Krebs on Security's Brian Krebs. "But the attackers apparently disabled that feature before initiating the fraudulent wires."

"Marisco said that a few days before the theft, she opened an e-mail informing her that a UPS package she had been sent was lost, and urging her to open the attached invoice," Krebs writes. "Nothing happened when she opened the attached file, so she forwarded it on to her assistant who also tried to view it. The invoice was in fact a Trojan horse program that let the thieves break in and set up shop and plant a password-stealing virus on Marisco’s computer, and on the PC belonging to her assistant -- the second person needed to approve transfers."

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