How a stolen credit card number makes cash for a fraudster

stolen credit card fraud implements

All this talk of stolen credit cards and “skimming.” Then what? What happens after you’ve swiped your card through a tampered-with ATM, gas pump, or bank entry door?

A kid, a computer, and a clever scam that games the system—that’s all it takes to make big bucks, without leaving home. For credit card fraudsters like the teenager who calls himself “d0g,” it’s simply online shopping. He doesn’t handle merchandise, cash checks, or visit drop spots. His butt never leaves his chair, his fingers never leave his keyboard, his eyes never leave his screen.

How fraud with a stolen credit card works

It’s all about shopping, according to Patrick Lambert, who poked around the underground “carder sites” that sell the information from stolen credit cards. Buy one for a few dollars and just go shopping! Well… not quite.

What’s a credit card fraudster to do: buy expensive goods online and have them shipped to his home? Certainly not. In his Interview with a malicious hacker making over $10,000 a week, [Edit 7/8/13: Lambert has taken down his fascinating and instructive article.] Lambert reports how easy it is to find and use these carder sites, and how to turn the hot credit card into hard cash:

So finally, the last question I had was how they manage to get actual, physical goods using that stolen credit card, without having to divulge their address. The way I was explained is that all he has to do is post ads on eBay for popular items that he doesn’t actually have. Then, when someone buys it, he turns around and buys that same item from some online store with the bought CC numbers, and puts the eBay buyer’s address as the shipping location. He makes those stores send the products directly to his buyers, and gets clean cash for them, which he can spend any way he wants. It’s a type of online money laundering. And apparently, the reason why these stolen numbers are sold so cheaply is because a vast majority of them are either already canceled, or maxed out.

Now I’m wondering about the wide-format pro printer I sold on Craig’s List: did I unwittingly sell it to an ID thief and obediently ship it to the innocent third party who supplied the thief with clean money? It could have worked that way, at least if I were a store that accepted credit card payments. In my case, I was paid via PayPal, and the funds cleared. Can a thief fund PayPal with a stolen credit card? I’m not sure…

You can see how this three-way scam works. An innocent and unsuspecting buyer of goods provides clean money in return for real items, and is none the wiser. A merchant sells items and is paid with a stolen credit card. d0g sits in the middle pulling strings and catching the money. Easy!

There’s much more to it though, Lambert learned from d0g. “Doing the crime, getting rich with stolen identities, is really easy. The hard part is covering your tracks, and 90% of the things these people do are for the sole purpose of covering themselves.”

That would include subscribing to a VPN (a secure and anonymous web tunnel), and funding an anonymous online payment system.

This sort of “hacking” (which is not what I would call it) can be done on a large or very small scale, but either way, easily, and causing serious financial damage. If it’s true that one credit card fraudster (like d0g, the teenager) can net over $10,000 a week with a low risk of getting caught, it’s clear that the vocation would attract legions of practitioners. It’s clear, too, that our payment system needs fixing.

© Copyright 2008-2013 Bambi Vincent. All rights reserved.

Other posts you may like:

I hunt thieves. I film them, interview them, write about them, and teach how to avoid them.

23 Comments

  • September 4, 2012

    YELM

    I am totally astounded by this one.

  • January 8, 2013

    Bill Cooper

    I still dont get it…even if the merchandize was purchased with stolen CC and sent to buyer, the buyer still sent Dog money to his some sort of an account like paypal. Why Cant that be traced back to him? I dont understand how this kid didnt get caught. He has an account that the unsuspecting buyers send money to? Cant they track it with the help of the unsuspecting buyer? I get it that the kid bought merchandize with a stolen CC and sent to the buyer, but the buyer paid someone…where did he send his money???

  • January 9, 2013

    Alex

    Most likely he can transfer them from one account to another until the trace is lost. After all, it’s not like anybody is gonna publish a real life “how to”.

  • January 18, 2013

    Anonymous

    It’s real simple…. U purchase pre-paid debit cards that allow paypal transfer, put them in someone else name, set up a paypal account in someones name linked to that debit card and when the paypal payment is made transfer it onto the debit card, withdraw the funds and dispose of the card.

  • [...] away. The items they purchased with the stolen credit card will most likely end up on sites like Craig’s List or Ebay, where the thieves can wash the money and cash [...]

  • March 1, 2013

    Scammer

    I want to sale all personal information of credit card holders online like credit card number , cvc code and everything ! if you are really interested in then do contact me ! and account will be verified and 1 account will be given free for sample !
    Best luck scammers :)

  • March 3, 2013

    wanna-be-a-scammer

    scammer, can i get one of those test CC numbers plz.

  • March 5, 2013

    Rj

    Smcamme link me…

  • [...] away. The items they purchased with the stolen credit card will most likely end up on sites like Craig’s List or Ebay where the thieves can wash the money and cash [...]

  • March 7, 2013

    Dooman

    Scammer contact me please ;)

  • April 11, 2013

    Scammer

    want to sale all personal information of credit card holders online like credit card number , cvc code and everything ! contact me

  • May 6, 2013

    Chuuch

    Scammer please contact me plz

  • May 18, 2013

    gladice

    l just want your help to stop scaming

  • May 25, 2013

    papi

    Scammer plz contact!!!

  • May 29, 2013

    Loki

    Can some tell me how to bypass verification code that visa always asks after you have input the ccv and cc number?

  • July 9, 2013

    hack

    @scammer
    i need one sample i have never done this but now i want to shop around 100 $ only please help me bro

  • September 22, 2013

    Lionel Messi

    Even if they leave a small trace, the Feds won’t go after this kids that steal 300 if so because it is a total waste of time and money, just think of how much will they spend in investigators and lawyers just to catch a kid who stole 300 bucks.

    They chase the big heads, the CVV vendors, or the ones that already have a system.

    I know this cuz I’ve been doing this, I know a lot of people who actually do this at bigger scale, and not only online, it’s really interesting when you learn about this.

  • September 23, 2013

    Bambi Vincent

    If you’ve been doing this Lionel, can you elaborate for us? Tell us more about the procedure. Where do you get your credit card numbers, and what exactly do you do to monetize them?

  • September 30, 2013

    CLUBO

    “Lionel Messi”, I really need to contact you ASAP.

  • November 18, 2013

    SOFI

    SCAMMER I Want To Buy All CC Numbers Which R Not Regoinal Block In INDIA…
    If U Can Help Me Den Plz Contact Me…

  • March 10, 2014

    patt

    [The following comment is typical of credit card traffickers. I'm leaving it up for educational purposes. Contact info has been removed.—thiefhunter]

    This listing is for one random (1) USA based Premium credit card number with complete details including name, address, phone and cvv.

    These are not cheap debit card CC’s with no CVV or 20 minute guarantees. These cards are guaranteed fresh and will be verified as valid before delivery. Unfortunately checking balance usually requires some form of pre-authorization and will burn cards so we do not check or guarantee balances.

    These are premium credit cards such as Platinum, Gold and Business credit cards from high end online retail shops and not someone’s leftover junk cards with low balances. These cards have lasted as long as 30 days or more in the past and have included healthy balances in excess of $5000. I have personally used these cards in the past to place multiple orders totaling in excess of $1000 or more.

    Premium Credit Card data includes following fields:

    Name on Card | Card Issuer | Card Number | Exp Date | CVV | Address | City | State | Zip | Country | Phone

    If you want to bay some , contact me : [removed]

  • April 19, 2014

    pedro

    Hey i need real info cc with money on it no bullshit also i got some connection at WU i can receive up to 40.000 every day without give my name so if any one of you want to make money lets work here its my email [deleted] if you know how to take money out of cc online via WU then we can work

  • April 19, 2014

    pedro

    I buy all cc only if they good my email is [deleted].

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