Eideard

Thieves used iTunes for laundering ID theft

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Four of the five losers

Five Rochdale men have been jailed for using iTunes music gift vouchers to launder money in an internet scam.

The men used stolen credit card numbers to buy £750,000 worth of vouchers to sell at cheaper prices through eBay. They were caught when police stopped one of the men during a search at Hull port in 2007 and seized his laptop.

It led them to orchestrator Suhail Tufail, 26, who admitted fraud charges and was jailed for five years at Manchester Crown Court.

In May 2007, Humberside Ports police stopped three men – including Mohammed Arfan Rasool and Imran Aslam – as part of a routine search when they arrived from Amsterdam.

A “suspicious” laptop belonging to Rasool was seized and examined by Greater Manchester Police’s economic crime unit.

When officers examined the hard drive, along with two other computers found at his home, they found the details of more than 7,000 bank cards. The same details were found on computers seized from Tufail. They later discovered that many of the details had been used to fraudulently purchase iTunes gift certificates.

It emerged that Tufail developed the idea of buying the vouchers and then selling them at a reduced price to launder cash from the cards…

An eBay spokesperson said the company had worked closely with police to provide evidence and was “delighted” with the sentences.

“Criminal activity is not tolerated on our site and we will continue to work alongside law enforcement agencies to ensure that anyone who attempts to commit fraudulent activity on eBay won’t get away with it,” they added.

I imagine Steve Jobs was sort of pleased, as well.

I recall iTunes gift cards being shut down last time we went to use one as a birthday present – and it’s satisfying to know the details of the “gift card scam” that was the explanation for the quick stop.

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Written by Ed Campbell

May 15, 2010 at 10:00 pm

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