Data Breach? Virtual Bounty Hunters Will Track it Down

The security company CloudeyeZ is taking a new approach to helping companies manage data breaches
By Jeremy Kirk
News Jun 19th 2012

Security expert Dan Clements is building a virtual "lost and found" box for data, a concept he hopes companies suffering from data breaches will embrace to find out just how bad the damage is.

Clements launched his startup, called CloudeyeZ, last September. He has since been nurturing an idea he says could save companies money by getting a better handle on how much data they've lost.

"There aren't a lot of solutions for companies that are hacked," Clements said.

CloudeyeZ in California has a few different services. It works with freelance computer security consultants around the world who specialize in infiltrating forums, for example, that trade in stolen credit card and bank account details.

"We are virtual bounty hunters," Clements said.

If a bank suspects it has been hacked, it could give CloudeyeZ a sample of the data believed to have been stolen, such as a Bank Identification Number (BIN) which identifies a bank associated with a credit or debit card. CloudeyeZ investigators report back where it was found, and leaves the next action to the bank, Clements said.

Contacting law enforcement is sometimes "a last resort" when companies are trying to assess what was hacked, Clements said. The stolen data often isn't identified, and the perpetrators -- many who are likely to live outside the U.S. -- are unlikely to be prosecuted.