Subway POS Hacker Receives Sentence

subway-logoNews about point of sale data breaches continues unabated but we also see convictions of those who would conspire to hack into point of sale (POS) systems.
One such example is found in a post by Grant Gross on’s LEGAL business, security blog, “U.S. man sentenced for hacking POS systems at Subway.”
As the only full-service point of sale provider — from software development to franchise incubator to ongoing support — part of Sintel’s commitment to our customers and business community is to share relevant ideas, information and industry news.
Gross’ post details the story of Shahin Abdollahi, a former Subway franchise owner, who hacked into computerized cash registers which he had sold to the sandwich restaurant chain and fraudulently added $40,000 to Subway gift cards.
In November, 2014, U.S. District Judge Richard Stearns sentenced Shahin Abdollahi, also known as Sean Holdt, 46, of Lake Elsinore, California, to 18 months in prison. Abdollahi was also ordered by the judge to pay more than $34,700 in restitution.
Abdollahi pleaded guilty in May to one count of conspiracy to commit computer intrusion and wire fraud and one count of wire fraud.
A U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) press release said that Abdollahi owned Subway franchises in Southern California, and later operated a California company called POS Doctor, which sold and installed point of sale computer systems to Subway franchises around the country.
Abdollahi’s plea gave details saying that, beginning in 2011, Abdollahi and Jeffrey Wilkinson remotely hacked into the POS systems he installed in Subway franchises, according to Abdollahi’s guilty plea. Thirteen Subway point of sale systems were involved in the breach.
The criminals used the fraudulent gift cards to make purchases at Subway, and also sold fraudulent gift cards on eBay and Craigslist, the plea notes.
Gross writes that Wilkinson, 37, of Rialto, California, pleaded guilty for his role in the scheme, and was sentenced to six months in prison in May.
Read the full post here.
For more insights into point of sale security, check out our related posts, Criminals Hit Their Target, 40 Million Cards Affected, U.S., Canada and Others Hit By POS InfectionsP.F. Chang’s China Bistro Gets Targeted, “Backoff” Tracking Memory, Taking Credit, and Breaking Point Of Sale.
Just as Sintel shares our vast point of sale experience and expertise with startup owners in order to help them make the best decisions from the very beginning, we are happy to share articles, advice and commentary about retail point of sale and security.
Whether you’re a first-time franchise hopeful, a small business owner or an established chain, it’s always smart to stay on top of the latest point of sale best security practices to achieve financial success.
If you are interested in learning more about Sintel’s point of sale systems and how our knowledge and support can impact your future success, call us for a complimentary phone consultation.
Sintel Systems is the only direct to end user full-service provider of tailored Point of Sale systems across retail, restaurant and service industries, including frozen yogurt shopspizzeriassushi restaurantscafés and retail stores.
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