The UK’s top cybercops are urging owners of small online shops to “protect their customers and profits” by guarding against card skimmers in the frenetic shopping period that starts with Black Friday, which lands on November 26 this year.
The warning comes from the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC)—which is part of GCHQ, the UK’s equivalent to the NSA—which says it identified 4,151 compromised online shops up to the end of September.
Card skimmers, also know as web skimmers, are bits of malicious software that are injected into legitimate websites, so they can steal shoppers’ credit card details. The skimmers read the details as users type them into the sites’ payment forms, or replace the payment forms with convincing fakes.
The longer that cybercriminals can keep their card skimmers on a website before its customers or owners notice, the more money they will make, so they take care to be as unobtrusive as possible. Unsurprisingly, Malwarebytes’ own research has shown that card skimming
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