GOOD READS

Amazon Lets Thieves Shop With Stolen Credit Card Numbers, Says Report

RELATED QUOTES

SymbolPriceChange
AMZN324.58-4.74

Amazon has been publicly outed for letting thieves shop with stolen credit card numbers.

The retailer doesn't ask for the security code on a credit card when setting up a new account, reports U.K. journalist Benjamin Cohen in an investigative report.

A criminal can simply open a new Amazon account, enter a stolen credit card number, and start shopping, Cohen found.

The report was initially looking into how safe it was to use new finagled credit cards that support Near Field Communications contact-less payments. With NFC, you can wave the credit card near a special reader to pay.

It turns out that millions of Visa credit cards issued by Barclays in the U.K. can be read by Android phones equipped with NFC readers. Thieves can electronically snatch the info right out of someone's wallet or purse, Cohen discovered.

But that alone shouldn't let them go shopping. Online retailers are supposed to validate that a person is holding the card by asking for the credit card security code (CSC), a three digit number on the back of the card.

It turns out that Amazon doesn't always ask for that number. Someone can fire up a new Amazon account and make a purchase without it, Cohen confirmed.

Business Insider looked for ourselves. After registering a new account we started a purchase transaction. We saw that the screen that asked for the credit card did not have a spot for the CSC number.

We did not have access to a stolen credit card so we didn't complete the transaction, but Cohen did. He wrote, "We were surprised that Amazon processed our transactions using a Barclays Visa that didn’t belong to the person making the order. The name didn’t match and neither did the billing address. But the transactions went through without a hitch for physical product orders and also electronic orders that were downloaded immediately," writes Cohen.

Granted, it's not that easy to find NFC credit cards that give up too much data. In the U.S. many NFC credit cards won't transmit information like the user's name, reports Computerworld. 

But crooks don't need NFC to grab credit card info. Any time you hand your card to a waiter, hotel clerk, retail salesperson, that person has access to your credit card information and from there it can wind up into the wrong hands.

If the charges turn out to be fraudulent, Amazon is on the hook because it doesn't follow best practices, says the report.

We asked Amazon to comment on this story. We'll update it if we hear back.



More From Business Insider

Quiz: How well do you know India's economy?

Question 1

Which of these products is India the world's largest producer of?

Poll Choice Options
  • Wheat
  • Rice
  • Milk
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10

Latest News

  • Why Herman Miller Should Have Decorated the Star Trek Set

    Watch one episode of the original Star Trek—heck, watch one minute of the show—and it's clear how much the 1960s Space Age aesthetic, one marked by Googie architecture and post-war car culture, inspired its set designers. Still, the midcentury... …

  • Motorola's New HQ Could Not Be Pinker or Sparklier

    Photo via Curbed Chicago Created by the Global Gensler firm—with maybe a few design pointers taken from some very girly middle schools—the extremely pretty new Motorola HQ is a vision of bright pink, sparkling neon signs, and quirky, interactive hangout... …

  • Catherine Deneuve Lists Resplendent French Chateau for $5.5M

    Click here to view the full photogallery. For the past few decades, when Catherine Deneuve wasn't hanging out with princes and spending time at her L.A. mansion (which, fun fact, later housed multiple ABBA members and a hippie cult),... …

  • Apple expands buybacks by $30 billion
    Apple expands buybacks by $30 billion

    Apple Inc (AAPL.O) has approved another $30 billion in share buybacks till the end of 2015 and authorized a rarely seen seven-for-one stock split, addressing calls to share more of its cash hoard while broadening the stock's appeal to individual investors. Activist investor Carl Icahn, who had famously called on the iPhone maker to boost its buyback program, tweeted his approval of the move on Wednesday. On Wednesday, Apple reported sales of 43.7 million iPhones in the quarter ended March, …

  • Eco-Friendly Prefab House Fits Together Like a 3D Puzzle

    In It's Not Easy Being Green, Curbed pulls back the curtain on cutting-edge, environmentally friendly design, from urban passive houses to green tweaks on suburban living. Have a suggestion for an upcoming column? Pass it along. Photo via Remodelista Despite... …

IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS & INTERVIEWS

  • This might well be India’s biggest Ponzi scam

    It was just too good to be true. Ashok Khital, 45, displays every symptom of a man who knows he's been conned. …

  • India's star studded football league

    High and mighty including Sachin, Salman & Sun Group buy ISL teams …

  • Leaderspeak with Rajesh Janey

    Rajesh Janey, President - India & SAARC, EMC shares many firsts in his life. …

  • Power Hungry

    Gujarat has power round-the-clock. Most other states do not. Why this will matter in the general elections. …

  • Etcetera

    The most keenly watched contest of the current general election will be the one for the Varanasi parliamentary seat, where the Bharatiya Janata Party's prime ministerial hopeful Narendra Modi squares off ... …

  • Economy vs Democracy

    As the country gets election fever, cash comes out of mattresses and turns into liquor, gifts, and food. But it is not bad for the health of the economy, reports Sarika Malhotra from the trenches. …

  • Bracing for Challenges

    Raghuram Rajan is preparing to deal with concerns that may arise when a new government takes charge. …

MARKET MOVERS

  • Most Actives
    Most Actives
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    16.52-0.33-1.96%
    UNITECH.BO
    14.31-0.27-1.85%
    SUZLON.BO
    120.40+7.00+6.17%
    FRL.BO
    66.05+4.10+6.62%
    MANGCHEM.BO
    54.40+1.65+3.13%
    HCLINFO.BO
  • Price % Gainers
    Price % Gainers
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    16.20+2.70+20.00%
    JAGSONPH.BO
    53.50+8.90+19.96%
    RUSHIL.BO
    40.45+6.45+18.97%
    RCIIND.BO
    63.95+8.90+16.17%
    MRPL.BO
    24.00+3.10+14.83%
    NELCAST.BO
  • Price % Losers
    Price % Losers
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    24.25-6.00-19.83%
    BMAL.BO
    13.26-2.24-14.45%
    ZYLOG.BO
    30.15-4.05-11.84%
    DRDATSONS.BO
    19.55-2.45-11.14%
    MARAL.BO
    121.50-13.50-10.00%
    POKARNA.BO
  •  
    Recent Quotes
    Symbol Price Change % ChgChart 
    Your most recently viewed tickers will automatically show up here if you type a ticker in the "Enter symbol/company" at the bottom of this module.
    You need to enable your browser cookies to view your most recent quotes.
  • Recent Quotes News

    •  
      Sign-in to view quotes in your portfolios.