IRELAND: Irish citizens will in future have the same controversial technology in their passports as US travellers. The new e-passport will feature a secure electronic chip to store encrypted information on the holder's identity, biographical data and a digital photograph. The project cost £4.1m, down from the original estimate of £6.1m, according to the Irish government.
UK/US: London-based spam fighter Spamhaus is fighting a judgement issued by a US court. US lawyers have filed appeal papers on behalf of the company to fight the case brought against it by email marketing company e360insight and its chief executive, David Linhardt. Spamhaus had previously ignored the US lawsuit, claiming that the US court had no jurisdiction.
UK: Prime targets for ID fraud are wealthy Londoners, according to a new survey by Call Credit. High-risk groups include: privately-renting, high-flying graduates; successful people from wealthy households; and high earners living in top-price city residences. Yet 82 per cent of victims did not report the incident, possibly because only 7 per cent of those reported ended in conviction.
Japan: A recent MP3 player competition at a Japan McDonald's has resulted in a massive recall after some winners complained that their McDonald's-branded players were pre-loaded with a variant of the QQpass spyware Trojan, as well as ten free tracks. The company has apologised, and has set up a recall helpline and issued a statement to help clean the infected PCs.
US: Watchdogs are worried about the increase in hacking of online brokerage accounts, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission. Trojan attacks from Eastern Europe are of particular concern. According to NASD, 25 per cent of US retail stock trades are made by online investors through roughly 10 million online accounts.
THE NETHERLANDS: Nigerian 419 advance fee fraudsters have spoofed the websites of DHL and Lufthansa Cargo. The scammers, working from Amsterdam and Rotterdam, aim to trick their victims into paying advance transport fees for vehicles that are never delivered. The fake sites were uncovered by Ultrascan Advanced Global Investigations.
RUSSIA: Three Russian DoS blackmailers have been jailed. The trio used Russia-based botnets, controlled via the US, to attack at least nine UK businesses including online bookies. The gang is thought to have raked in at least £2.1 million from victims in 30 different countries. They were sentenced to eight years of imprisonment.
AUSTRALIA: Not all is sunshine at the National Australia Bank, which recently re-issued a phishing warning following a spate of DDoS attacks. According to the bank, it decided to re-issue its phishing warning just in case fraudsters were using the attack as a way of diverting customers onto spoofed versions of the bank's website.