The security details of 21 million German bank accounts was offered for sale for the equivalent of just €1.75 each, according to a magazine investigation.
Identity thieves, who claim to have stolen the details of 21 million German bank accounts, were offering the data for a total of €12m (US$15.3m) according to WirtschaftsWoche magazine.
Reporters for the publication claim to have met two individuals involved in the security scam at a face-to-face meeting in Hamburg who offered them a CD-ROM containing the names, addresses, phone numbers, birthdays, account numbers and bank routing numbers of 1.2 million accounts. The journalists were posing as interested buyers working for a gambling operation.
“We took away with us the first delivery, a CD with 1.2 million accounts, that we couldn’t imagine,” said one of the editors involved in the investigation. “In the worst case, three out of four German households would have to be afraid that some money could be taken from their checking account without their authorisation, and perhaps even without their realising it,” the magazine stated.
It’s Germany’s second mega heist of personal information in as many months. In October, T-Mobile admitted losing records belonging to 17 million customers that included their names, addresses, dates of birth, phone numbers, and email addresses.
Peter Schaar, a government official in charge of protecting personal data, said the WirtschaftsWoche report should serve as a “wake-up call”.