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Cybercriminals eye profits in festive season

Trend Micro has seen a sharp rise in the recruitment of money mules recently

Cybercriminals eye profits in festive season
More money mules are being hired to help cybercriminals make a profit on stolen financial information.

It's the busiest time of year for online shopping and internet Security firm Trend Micro has also observed a sharp increase in the recruitment of money mules.

Money mules refer to people that are hired through work-at-home schemes and other ads that promise instant wealth. They help cybercriminals make a profit for selling personal and financial details on the black market.

"In a gloomy economy, many of us are looking for the best deals, but be careful that your desire to save money or make money does not make you an easy target for cybercriminals to take advantage of," warns  Rik Ferguson, senior security advisor at Trend Micro.

Credit card details of UK, US and EU account holders, together with the 3-digit security code, cost less than $5 for 10 cards on the malware black market, while debit card information of Russian personal bank accounts, including scans of the account holder's passport & NI number, passwords and online banking information, costs just $195 for 50 cards.

But it's not just cards that are up for sale - 1,000 Gmail accounts cost $19 on the sly and 100 Twitter followers are available for less than $5.

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