The identities of more than four million Britons are being offered for sale on the internet, The Times has learnt. Highly sensitive financial information, including credit card details, bank account numbers, telephone numbers and even PINs are available to the highest bidder.
The information being traded on the web has been intercepted by a British company and collated into a single database for the first time. The Lucid Intelligence database contains the records of four million Britons, and 40 million people worldwide, mostly Americans. Security experts described the database as the largest of its kind in the world.
The database is held by Colin Holder, a retired senior Metropolitan police officer, who served on the fraud squad. He has collected the information over the past four years. His sources include law enforcement from around the world, such as British police and the FBI, anti-phishing and hacking campaigners and members of the public. Mr Holder said he had invested £160,000 in the venture so far. He plans to offset the cost by charging members of the public for access to his database to check whether their data security has been breached.
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