Researchers at web gateway security specialists Finjan have uncovered an underground crime data exchange service which is highly sophisticated in nature. The exchange, known as SellCVV2, promotes the sale of fraudulent credit card data, offering not only volume discounts for fraudsters with bigger ambitions, but guarantees as well.

According to Finjan, the site "appears to use Google's Blogspot service" and is "typical of a number of portals promoting the exchange of fraudulent card data." However, Yuval Ben-Itzhak, Finjan's chief technology officer, warns "what is apparent from the SellCVV2 site is the level of commercialization of the traders involved. Prices are segmented depending on whether a card is a Classic Visa or MasterCard, a premium account such as a Gold, Platinum or Business/Corporate card and its country of issue. Prices typically range from $38.00 per set of card data for premium card accounts in small volumes, going down to $10.00 for Classic card data in volumes of 100 or more. Customers are also being offered trial set of data, as well as a guarantee on account details that do not work."

If ever cynics needed proof that there is a highly organised criminal industry behind card and identity theft then this is it. The trial card data offer, the volume discounts and the guarantees are all symptomatic of organised criminal activities.

"The level of sophistication shown on the site, acts as a clear warning to anyone who thinks card fraud is a containable problem" Ben-Itzhak concludes.

Credit card fraud only continues to grow here in the US. Even after implementing broader security measures on fraud and anti-identity theft, the problem has continued to be an acute problem here in the US.