Daily Archives: 2006-03-30

Fraud or feature?

Dual use technologies are everywhere. Myself and colleagues have been presenting Phish and Chips, and the Man-in-the-Middle Defence at the Security Protocols Workshop this week, in which we describe how the EMV protocol suite can be modified in unintended ways, and that a card interceptor can be used for both fraudulent and beneficial activities.

A second example is how the waters in which internet phishermen angle for account details regularly become muddied by the marketing departments of enterprising banks. Every once in a while, these chaps manage to send out genuine emails entreating the user to click on the link in the email, or to navigate to a site not clearly part of the bank’s site, then provide their personal details.

Today I discovered that the same dilemma has been playing out in the fight to secure the fascia of cash machines against the attachment of illicit skimmers. I was off to work promtly this morning, to open up shop for an ITN TV crew doing a piece on Chip and PIN. After cleverly managing to miss my train, I was forced to take a rather expensive taxi ride to Cambridge — so much so that I had to have the taxi stop for me to withdraw some cash. It was then that I spotted this device attached to the slot of the Barclays Bank ATM on White Horse road in Baldock, Hertfordshire.

ATM attachment detail side

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