Hacker Hunted In New CardsScheme

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WHITTIER, Calif. - (04/26/06) – Local police are searching fora young hacker who until recently lived with his parents, but sincethen has moved from hotel to hotel as he has led a ring of creditcard thieves. Three suspects were arrested last week but theringleader remains at large while police try to tally the losses tomore than a dozen credit unions and banks around the country. Thering has apparently hacked into the websites of theinstitutions–including LA FCU, Orange County's FCU, Vista FCUand California Coast CU–and gained confidential memberinformation that they have used to make counterfeit credit cards byduplicating the magnetic stripes with the members' data, accordingto Det. Ed Nyberg of the Whittier Police Department. The cards havebeen used to buy thousands of dollars of high-priced electronicequipment and make cash withdrawals on the credit unionmembers’ accounts, he said. “I’ve got creditunions all over the country involved,” Nyberg told The CreditUnion Journal. Other victims are customers of MBNA and CommerceBank of Kansas City, he said. Whittier Police arrested threefigures in the ring, but the alleged ringleader, identified as22-year-old Robert Foote, remains at large. Foote, who usuallylives with his parents in this suburb of Los Angeles, has recentlybeen moving from hotel to hotel to elude police, according toNyberg.

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