Online courses are extremely popular in traditional educational settings. I know this from personal experience as a college professor who teaches courses online in addition to my more conventional classes taught to students in the classroom. Online courses are now even becoming popular among criminals and scammers. The security company Digital Shadows is reporting about Russian criminals who are teaching an online course in how to make money through credit card fraud. The course is a six week course consisting of twenty lectures of between one and two hours for each lecture. Tuition is approximately $750 payable in Bitcoins or other electronic currencies. In addition to tuition, the students are also required to pay an additional $200 in electronic currency for course materials.
The course is taught only in Russian and promises that it can teach aspiring criminals how to make as much as twelve thousand dollars per month. The course provides information about where to get stolen credit card information, how to use it to buy goods as well as how to sell the goods and launder the money.
The course material is very instructive to all of us as consumers as to how we can more safely use our credit cards. One important lesson is to use your EMV chip credit card whenever possible as well as to use cards with stronger authentication protocols when buying online. The course is also a reminder that we should refrain from using our debit cards for retail purchases because the consumer protection laws involved with debit cards are not nearly as strong as those regarding credit cards. Finally, in the section of the course dealing with laundering money, the course teaches students to hire people desiring to work at home to reship goods purchased through stolen credit cards as part of the money laundering process. This serves as a strong warning to people to avoid becoming an accomplice to these crimes by getting involved with this type of employment.