Menu
With employee help, ID theft ring allegedly stole $700,000 in Apple gift cards

With employee help, ID theft ring allegedly stole $700,000 in Apple gift cards

Five people have been indicted in scheme that took advantage of Apple 'instant credit'

Apple products are some of the most expensive and desirable in tech so it makes sense that the company's gift cards are proving an attractive currency for criminals.

On Thursday, the Manhattan District Attorney's office said it has indicted five people for using personal information stolen from around 200 people to fund the purchase of hundreds of thousands of dollars in Apple gift cards, which in turn were used to buy Apple products.

The DA's office alleges that Annie Vuong, a 27-year-old from the Bronx, stole the names, address, birth dates and social security numbers of patients at the Manhattan dental office where she worked. That data was passed to Devin Bazile, a 30-year-old former Apple sales associate from the Bronx, who used it to apply for Apple "instant credit," the lawsuit alleges.

Instant credit is offered by Apple in conjunction with Barclaycard, and provides an immediate credit line for use in the purchase of Apple products. In this case, the DA says credit was extended for various amounts between $2,000 and $7,000.

The approval comes in the form of a barcode, which Bazile and associates are alleged to have shared with Apple Store employees recruited to help in the scheme. The employees worked at Apple Stores in Manhattan, White Plains and New Jersey and used the barcodes to purchase Apple gift cards.

In all, the group allegedly purchased around $700,000 of Apple gift cards, which were subsequently used to buy Apple products including laptops, the Manhattan DA said.

"Using stolen information to purchase Apple products is one of the most common schemes employed by cybercrime and identity theft rings today," District Attorney Cyrus Vance said in a statement.

"We see in case after case how all it takes is single insider at a company -- in this instance, allegedly, a receptionist in a dentists' office -- to set an identity theft ring in motion, which then tries to monetize the stolen information by purchasing Apple goods for resale or personal use," he said.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Martyn Williams covers mobile telecoms, Silicon Valley and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Martyn on Twitter at @martyn_williams. Martyn's e-mail address is martyn_williams@idg.com


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags smartphonesAppleiPhonehardware systemsconsumer electronicsmac laptopslaptopsIdentity fraud / theft

Featured

Slideshows

EDGE 2018: Kiwis kick back with Super Rugby before NZ session

EDGE 2018: Kiwis kick back with Super Rugby before NZ session

New Zealanders kick-started EDGE 2018 with a bout of Super Rugby before a dedicated New Zealand session, in front of more than 50 partners, vendors and distributors on Hamilton Island.‚Äč

EDGE 2018: Kiwis kick back with Super Rugby before NZ session
EDGE 2018: Kiwis assess key customer priorities through NZ research

EDGE 2018: Kiwis assess key customer priorities through NZ research

EDGE 2018 kicked off with a dedicated New Zealand track, highlighting the key customer priorities across the local market, in association with Dell EMC. Delivered through EDGE Research - leveraging Kiwi data through Tech Research Asia - more than 50 partners, vendors and distributors combined during an interactive session to assess the changing spending patterns of the end-user and the subsequent impact to the channel.

EDGE 2018: Kiwis assess key customer priorities through NZ research
Show Comments