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Crime Businesses Security Wireless Networking IT

Wardrivers Target Seattle Businesses 138

angry tapir writes "Seattle police are investigating a group of criminals who they say have been cruising around town in a black Mercedes stealing credit card data by tapping into wireless networks belonging to area businesses. The group has been at it for about five years, according to an affidavit signed by Detective Chris Hansen, a fraud investigator with the Seattle Police Department."
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Wardrivers Target Seattle Businesses

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  • by billyea ( 2029384 ) on Friday April 22, 2011 @08:30PM (#35911666)
    SECURE YOUR WIRELESS ACCESS POINTS. Otherwise, unwanted traffic is your fault.
  • by gavron ( 1300111 ) on Friday April 22, 2011 @09:02PM (#35911822)

    I hope you get lots of dollars, but wardriving is NOT a criminal activity. It's not a misdemeanor either. It's not against the law.

    Receiving openly broadcast radio signals is one of our rights in the United States. While driving is a privilege, combining these does not make it a criminal activity.

    I'm not trying to "justify" one event (not a crime) by comparing it to pedophiles (or paedophiles if you prefer an archaic and no longer correct spelling). There's no real comparison between NON-unlawful reception of open radio signals and molesting children. (Note: not all pedophiles molest children. I specifically referred to molesters because THAT IS criminal activity.

    Best regards to you,


  • by ustolemyname ( 1301665 ) on Friday April 22, 2011 @09:17PM (#35911868)
    Using someone else's credit card is criminal. Doesn't matter if they use a megaphone and tell the whole world what it is. The fact the information is obtained through wardriving is simply the method.
  • by clang_jangle ( 975789 ) on Friday April 22, 2011 @09:18PM (#35911870) Journal
    I'm always amazed at shows like CSI and NCIS that make it look as though Law Enforcement is all about 1337 h4xx0rz using tech to prevail against evil, when reading between the lines of so many news articles reveals quite a different story.
  • by hedwards ( 940851 ) on Friday April 22, 2011 @10:08PM (#35912080)

    Did you even bother to read the summary? I get that this is /. and nobody RTFAs, but the summary was pretty clear that this wasn't just a case of wardriving, this was a case of wardriving until they found an unencrypted wifi connection and rummaging for credit card details. The details were then abused.

    Trust me, they wouldn't be wasting the money on that around here if it were just stealing a bit of bandwidth.

  • by ustolemyname ( 1301665 ) on Friday April 22, 2011 @10:09PM (#35912082)
    Exactly. But he was leaping to some crazy conclusion of this logic:
    These guys were wardriving + the police are after them = cops are after them because they were wardriving
    Which is stupid. The cops are after these guys for misusing the information they obtained, not because they were wardriving. If they had been wardriving, and simply retained the information for their own use the cops never could have found them and never would have needed to. Quite frankly his posts are aggressive and irrational, and I was trying to explain to him why the cops are actually after these guys. From the first sentence in the summary:

    stealing credit card data

    And if you RTFA you learn that the owner of the Mercedes was only discovered after he was busted performing other forms of fraud.

  • by dissy ( 172727 ) on Friday April 22, 2011 @10:25PM (#35912182)

    Using someone else's credit card is criminal. Doesn't matter if they use a megaphone and tell the whole world what it is

    While yes using someone else's credit card fraudulently is criminal, I wouldn't say the megaphone bit doesn't matter.

    Screaming out their customers credit cards of course does NOT excuse the wardrivers crime in any way shape or form. But the separate act of sending all of their customers credit card information to the world should also be a crime as well.

    At the very least I wish the police would post a list of these companies, so the general public knows they can not be trusted with our business.

    At most, the companies should be brought up on charges of mishandling customer credit accounts and fraud.
    They will just need to schedule that court case for a different day than the wardrivers court date, so everyone can attend.

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