AT&T has accused three of its former employees of installing malware on the computer systems of the company with a plan to illegally unlock the customer phones by generating the codes for unlocking.
The company has filed lawsuit against an Anaheim-based IT company and the three employees alleging of scheme to install malware.
According to the allegation made by AT&T, the Swift Unlocks Company from Anaheim along with three customer service reps from AT&T, Bothell center worked to unlock codes for the phones produced by the company which were under contract and made these phones eligible to transfer to other carrier network and then sold these phones for making profit.
By installing the malware on the company computers, the service reps provided easy access for Prashan Vira, the owner of the Swift Unlocks and about 50 other employees from SU. The team from Swift unlocks then operated a program which generated the unlock codes using the credentials of the customer service reps of AT& T.
The company accuses the reps of receiving $2000 in every two weeks for their cooperation with SU. The company also said in the lawsuit that Swift Unlocks thus gained access to thousands of phones before the scam came into light.
Service providers like AT&T, Sprint or Verizon lock their phones to a single carrier so that their customers will stay with them during the contract period. Unlocking the phone will remove the barrier and enables the users to shift to other networks.
The malware installed in the computer systems enabled the frauds to issue commands to the system from a remote and unauthorized server and used the PIN numbers of the customers to generate an automated request to unlock the phones without authorization.
The AT&T were able to trace the requests to three employees specially named Marc Saptain, Kyra Evans and Nguyen Lam worked in an AT&T call center in Washington in 2013. The names of the 50 defendants who created the software and used it to carry out the unlocking operations are unknown.
At first the malware gathered the confidential information about the internal applications and the computer systems of AT&T and were transmitted to the 50 defendants through a remote server alleged AT&T. The information thus obtained was used by the defendants to adjust the malware to facilitate hacking of the customer service applications of the service provider. The defendants then re-sold the unlocked phones.