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PandaLabs Uncovers Alarming Statistics on Cyber-Crime Black Market

ORLANDO, Fla. Jan. 20, 2011 PandaLabs Panda Security

The cyber-crime black market, which has traditionally centered on distributing bank and credit card details stolen from users around the world, diversified its business model in 2010, and now sells a much broader range of hacked confidential information including bank credentials, log-ins, passwords, fake credit cards and more. But as openly available as this information is, PandaLabs discovered that it can only be accessed by personally contacting the hackers who are promoting their information for sale on forums and in chat rooms.

Making the Sale

$2 $80 $700 $82,000

$10 $1,500 $180 $200-1,000 $3,500 $30 and $300

For more sophisticated cyber-criminals who want to set up their own fake online stores and use rogueware techniques to obtain both user details and also reap the money these unsuspecting victims pay for fake antivirus products, there are also teams available to deliver turnkey projects, design, develop and publish the complete store, even positioning it in search engines. In this case, the price depends on the project.

$15 $20

Following is a summary of the products available and their prices:



Credit card details

From $2-90

Physical credit cards

From $180 + cost of details

Card cloners

From $200-1000

Fake ATMs

From $3,500

Bank credentials

From $80-700 (with guaranteed balance)

Money laundering

From 10 to 40 percent of the total

$10 for simple accounts without guaranteed balance

Online stores and pay platforms

From $80-1500 with guaranteed balance

Design and publishing of fake online stores

According to the project (not specified)

Purchase and forwarding of products

From $30-300 (depending on the project)

Spam rental

From $15

SMTP rental

From $20 or $40 for three months

VPN rental

$20 for three months

Big Business

This cyber-criminal black market caters to buyers’ needs just as any other business, and functions in similar ways. Since there is a great deal of competition in this industry, the rule of supply and demand ensures that prices are competitive, and operators even offer bulk discounts to higher-volume buyers. They will offer free ‘trial’ access to stolen bank or credit card details, as well as money back guarantees and free exchanges.  

However, since it is a black market, there are clearly many areas that differ from traditional business. Since anonymity is of the utmost importance, many sellers use underground forums to keep out of sight. Their offices are effectively the Internet, though they even go as far as advertising their ‘office hours.’ Some are more brazen about their activities, and have accounts on Facebook and Twitter which they use as shop windows. To ensure anonymity, contact is always made across instant messaging applications or free, generic email accounts.

Once contact is made, the transaction can be executed directly or through a website set up by the seller, using a username and password, which as with any online store, allows buyers to browse and fill their "shopping cart." Payment is always made up-front using services such as Western Union, Liberty Reserve and WebMoney.


About PandaLabs

SOURCE Panda Security

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