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WEB HOSTING SECURITY

Amazon.com Receipt Generator Scam Attempts to Dupe Sellers
By: wubayou
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    2010-12-15

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    The holiday season brings added traffic to online shopping sites, and many cybercriminals are using this to their advantage. Since online shopping is seen as a easy and quick alternative to conventional shopping, sites like Amazon.com are popular Internet stops during the holidays. To capitalize off of this popularity, some hackers have created a phony receipt generator that affects those who use Amazon.com. Rather than targeting buyers and unsuspecting online shoppers, however, this scam aims to dupe sellers.

    The Amazon.com scam is fairly simple. It was reportedly detected by GFI Software, an online security vendor. Hackers created a program that can generate customized, phony receipts for its users. The users can then send these receipts to Amazon.com retailers and ask for refunds, claiming that the items in question were never received or are missing. 

    If the seller is not diligent in checking up on the phony transaction, they could make the mistake of shipping out items to the fraudsters that were never paid for. Considering the inevitable increase of traffic during the holiday season and the chaos that seems to come with it, now is the perfect time for scammers to take advantage of overwhelmed retailers and any oversight that may take place. When you add in the fact that the phony receipt generating software is free, you can bet that plenty of people will attempt to try their hand in the scam as well.

    According to GFI, Amazon Receipt Generator.exe has been around for a couple of months. The software can create phony HTML receipts to be sent to retailers rather easily. The software's interface is straightforward, and it offers a form that can be filled in to generate the receipts. Information such as the date the order was placed, the order number, the item name, price, address information, and more can be entered to make the receipt look as detailed as possible. Amazon portals from different countries such as .com, .co.uk, .ca, and .fr can be selected, too. 

    After clicking on the Generate button, an HTML file of the receipt is created. The receipt looks quite similar to actual Amazon.com receipts, giving the scam a decent chance to work should it fall into the hands of an unsuspecting retailer.

    Since the receipt generator does a good job of producing a solid replica, the scam can work. However, there are ways in which retailers can check details to avoid getting themselves into trouble. First, since the receipts are fake, there will not be any official record of the purchases. You can check with Amazon to see if the purchase is legitimate or not.  Also, the order number at the top of the receipt can be used to check for accuracy. The order numbers that are generated are phony, and will raise a huge red flag.  Finally, under the Payment Information section of the receipt, any information related to a Visa transaction might have some extra digits added on.

    The original Amazon receipt generator has inspired other hackers to create similar programs. However, checking the intricate details of such claims should ensure that you do not get scammed by users of such software.

    For more on this topic, visit http://news.cnet.com/8301-1009_3-20025172-83.html?tag=mncol;txt


    DISCLAIMER: The content provided in this article is not warranted or guaranteed by Developer Shed, Inc. The content provided is intended for entertainment and/or educational purposes in order to introduce to the reader key ideas, concepts, and/or product reviews. As such it is incumbent upon the reader to employ real-world tactics for security and implementation of best practices. We are not liable for any negative consequences that may result from implementing any information covered in our articles or tutorials. If this is a hardware review, it is not recommended to open and/or modify your hardware.

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