Society

Tiny 'Skimmers' Steal Credit Card Info From Cash Registers (Video)

| by Michael Allen

Credit card theft has been going on for decades, but some high-tech thieves have found a new way to steal people's info.

Several tech-savvy crooks were recently caught installing a half-dozen "skimmers" on cash registers at a Nordstrom store in Aventura, Fla.

The thieves plugged their "skimmers" into the Ps2 cable connectors that connect into the back of computerized cash registers (video below).

The skimmers are Ps2 keystroke loggers, which are similar to a USB drive.

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The Ps2 keystroke loggers record all the data from credit card purchases and store the information. In this case, the thieves made sure their small equipment matched the connections on the back of the cash registers to avoid suspicion.

"It's a little piece of plastic, usually purple, that fits into the port where your keyboard connects to your computer," security analyst Brian Krebs told CNBC. "It intercepts any data that is sent on that communication channel, whether it's keystrokes or somebody swiping a card through a terminal."

Krebs originally broke the story on his KrebsOnSecurity.com blog:

Skimmer scammers who place these devices on cash registers may not need to return to the scene of the crime to retrieve the stolen card data: I found several of these hardware keyloggers that include 2 GB of storage and built-in wireless support that allows the devices to connect to a local wireless network and send email reports of the stolen data.

Nordstrom spokesperson Tara Darrow told CNBC, "We take this situation seriously and have been working closely with law enforcement and forensics experts to investigate this and understand any impact on our customers."

Sources: CNBC and KrebsOnSecurity.com