WASHINGTON – Federal prosecutors on Monday charged a Miami man with the largest case of credit and debit card data theft ever in the United States, accusing the one-time government informant of swiping 130 million accounts on top of 40 million he stole previously. Albert Gonzalez, 28, broke his own record for identity theft by hacking into retail networks, according to prosecutors, though they say his illicit computer exploits ended when he went to jail on charges stemming from an earlier case. Gonzalez is a former informant for the U.S. Secret Service who helped the agency hunt hackers, authorities say. The agency later found out that he had also been working with criminals and feeding them information on ongoing investigations, even warning off at least one individual, according to authorities. Gonzalez, who is already in jail awaiting trial in a hacking case, was indicted Monday in New Jersey and charged with conspiring with two other unnamed suspects to steal the private information. Prosecutors say the goal was to sell the stolen data to others.
It's sad that technology is making it more convenient for people to use their credit cards/debit cards for purchases, but at the same time the risk of someone hacking into your account is increasing. Only thing I have to say is make sure that you are keeping up with purchases made on your account by reviewing your bank/credit card statement regularly. Be careful about making online purchases on computers other than your own, you never know what type of security level is on other computers, if any. Also be careful about who you are giving your credit/debit card info to. Be very cautious about ordering things from random sites. If you are a little bit suspicious about the site, then go with your gut feeling and DO NOT ORDER FROM THERE!!!