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Hackers Invade an Online Florist in Australia

Several Australians have suffered theft and misuse of their credit card numbers by fraudsters worldwide when they placed orders with the online florist 'Roses Only'.

Such an incident in Australia has happened for the first time in five years. According to an expert, it is a warning that calls for improved technology to safeguard consumers against Internet crime.

The fraudsters used the stolen card details to purchase items including rail tickets to travel in Italy, airline tickets to fly to Abut Dhabi, computers and hotel bookings. The incident is so serious that New South Wales Police has established Strike Force Parkview to probe the potential hacking into the database of Roses Only and the theft of credit card particulars that belongs to the consumers.

According to David Bell, Head of the Australian Bankers' Association, the banks with which the customers have accounts would help in police investigations. ABC News reported this on September 17, 2007. The association, however, is not aware of the scale of defraud and the amount of money that was involved, he said.

Some reports also say that luxury purchases have been made in South Asia with some of the credit card details. However, a representative of the association was not able to confirm that these luxury purchases in South Asia happened. Since the investigation had just started, further information was not available, the representative said. This news was published by theage.com.au on September 14, 2007.

In a statement released through Gavin Anderson, a corporate public relations company, Roses Only said that it had received an advice recently that there could have been compromise of their systems through an illegal intrusion in early 2007. The florist quickly handled the situation by hiring the services of a reputed international technology security firm to upgrade their systems' security.

The statement further confirmed that the security problem was now fixed and the systems were running properly. Regretting the inconvenience caused due to the incident, the florist assured future safety for customers in conducting any online transactions.

The florist also assured its customers that they would not be responsible for any illegal transactions and in case of any concerns, they could call up their financial department.

Related article: Hackers Redirect Windows Live Search to Malicious Sites

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