Hackers used cheap, off-the-shelf malware to breach security at U.S. Target stores and compromise data for more than 110 million customers, a tech website said.
Target confirmed last weekend malicious software was embedded in point-of-sale equipment at its checkout counters to collect secure data as credit cards were swiped during transactions.
BlackPOS likely comes from
Data on cards' magnetic stripes are encrypted when sent from POS terminals to financial institutions for verification but the memory-scraping malware snags the information while it is temporarily "parked" as plain text in POS terminals.
"Interestingly, a search in Virustotal.com -- a
Forbes said the hackers likely had access to every POS terminal in every Target store for more than two weeks.
The website Help Net Security said Thursday a Russian security firm has been tracking the activities of cyber criminals it suspects of using BlackPOS in thefts from customers of a number of U.S. banks.
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