Mumble Attacks

Cameron began to break into computer accounts when he was thirteen. He specialized in “mumble attacks,” which he learned from his AOL friend “egod.” In a mumble attack, the hacker calls a customer service representative asking for someone’s account information. When the representative asks a security question to authenticate the caller—such as a PIN—the hacker mumbles the response. Either the employee is satisfied with the gibberish and processes the hacker’s request or repeats the security question. The hacker then mutters the answer again. After several rounds, the employee gives up in frustration and processes the request anyway. In his version of the attack, Cameron would call up AOL customer service and ask representatives, who often worked from a call center in India or Mexico and had less training than their American counterparts, for a password reset. When asked for the last four numbers of his credit card number, Cameron would mumble them. The representatives usually reset the password.

Fancy Bear Goes Phishing: The Dark History of the Information Age, in Five Extraordinary Hacks
Scott J. Shapiro