An Australian man has managed to escape a jail sentence despite admitting to stealing nearly AU$30,000 (around US $27,700) from ATMs. According to the prosecutors, he devised the attacks using information from an ATM repair manual found on the Web.
Brian Sommer, 23, from Bundaberg, Queensland, used to work in a pizza shop back in 2007, when he came across an ATM repair manual on the Internet. The document contained default passwords for accessing certain ATM models and information about their options.
The young computer enthusiast realized that he could use the information to access the hard disks of ATMs and alter the settings so that he could withdraw large amounts of cash. He put his idea to test for the first time on a service station's ATM and managed to walk off with $21,120. An hour later, he hit another automated teller machine in Hervey Bay and scored $7,500.
There was a flaw in Sommer's plan, though – it required the use of real credit cards. Therefore, in order to pull off several attacks over a period of seven months, the hacker used cards belonging to himself, his girlfriend, his mother, as well as two friends. This led the authorities knocking on his door.
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