Press-Release: Security Leak...
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 18:16:22 +0200
> Press Release
> For Immediate Release
> Security Leak at IRS
> Want to get money from IRS? There is an easier way to get money from
> than inventing tax deductions: direct someone else's tax return
> payments to
> your bank account!
> According to a report in recent issue of TELE-satellite Magazine, this
> is a
> fairly easy game, which can be handled by anyone with some basic
> on how to turn the knob of a satellite receiver.
> The weak link is TeleFile, a recently introduced system to send tax
> to the IRS. This system uses telephone lines to transfer data. Whilst
> lines are generally thought of being secure, this is no longer the
> when someone calls the IRC via a mobile phone.
> This is exactly what an editor of TELE-satellite Magazine did: he
> pointed his satellite antenna to the S-band, where mobile telephone
> are transmitted in the clear.
> All there was to do was to switch on the DTMF decoder to get an alert
> someone called the IRS 1-800 number. The rest is easy: just take note
> all the secret numbers which are exchanged between the legitimate tax
> and the IRS.
> Then, after the legitimate user told the IRS where to transfer his tax
> return money, the TELE-satellite Magazine editor was short of not
> the IRS himself, pretending to be the tax payer, and re-direct return
> payment to his own account.
> Says Christian Mass, the editor who found out about this surprising
> security hole: "The IRS knows about security protection, but they tell
> secret PIN code with which to change the bank account, openly via the
> telephone. Any criminal can then easily re-direct a tax refund to his
> Adds Alexander Wiese, publisher of TELE-satellite Magazine: "You can
> the public over and over that mobile communication is not secure.
> While it
> needs criminal energy to tap into a wire, it's so easy to come across
> wireless communication, even by accident."
> "Best of all", adds Christian Mass, " the IRS' friendly computer voice
> repeats the tax payers full address and Social Security number - open
> anyone to make some extra money"
> TELE-satellite Magazine is a bi-monthly satellite trade magazine,
> the global satellite scene. A regular feature in TELE-satellite
> Magazine is
> a series about security leaks in saellite communications. Other
> stories in
> this series covered leaking US military satellites, which
> Latin American FM radios into Europe, tapping into INMARSAT telephone
> conversations, and pirate satellite uplink stations.
> TELE-satellite Magazine is available at specialized newsstands in US
> Europe, and can be found on the Internet:
> Contact about this Press Release:
> TELE-satellite Marketing Dep:
> Judith Martin, Tel +36-1-3010125, Email judith@TELE-satellite.com
> Author of this article:
> Christian Mass, Tel +31-45-5640002, Email cmass@TELE-satellite.com
> Publisher of TELE-satellite Magazine:
> Alexander Wiese, Tel +36-30-336266, Email awiese@TELE-satellite.com
> Note to Press:
> A copy of this issue of TELE-satellite Magazine can be obtained from:
> TELE-satellite Magazine
> Marketing Dep.
> POB 445
> HU-1395 Budapest
> Tel: +36-1-3010125
> Fax: +36-1-3010127
> Email: marketing@TELE-satellite.com
> This article can also be read online at:
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