=[BUSTED]= Seattle Area War-Driver & B&E Thugs

Speaking of wireless security…

Cops have seized a 1988 Mercedes sedan used as a rolling base of operations for hackers, forcing their way into wireless networks to obtain personal information.  The seizure was made after a years-long investigation into a string of network intrusions and commercial burglaries.  Two other Seattle men were accused of stealing $750,000 in computer equipment and other items.

The car’s owner is suspected of using sophisticated electronic equipment to break into networks using Wired Equivalent Privacy, or WEP, an old and  weak wireless security protocol.  A search of the car in October uncovered network tools, antennas and other suspicious items.

The suspects are thought to have been working together since May 2006.  An unspecified number of small and medium-sized local businesses had suffered recent network intrusions.  The car’s owner was seen in the vicinity of several of the network intrusion sites.  “Wardrivers” use laptops or other devices to locate wireless networks.  After locating a network, the attacker then accesses and sniffs the network to obtain identity and financial information.

The car’s owner was arrested at a wine bar attempting to use a gift card stolen during a string of commercial burglaries.  During much of 2010, a pair of burglars targeted commercial businesses.  In an odd twist, the men charged in nine of the break-ins are alleged to have sought out servers and internal documents believed to contain identifying information.  Deputy Prosecutor Mafe Rajul alleged the men had stolen $750,000 worth of equipment during a nine-month period.  Though the men have been charged in nine burglaries, they are suspected in many more.

So, once the attacker was sure that your servers and workstations contain “interesting documents”, he sends over the thugs to nick the whole rig…