Tag Archives: BMO

Hacking an ATM Seems Easy & God Can’t Get Credit?

Two 14-year olds in Winnipeg seemed to have no trouble hacking a Bank of Montreal ATM machine. They found an ATM internal operating manual online and decided to test it at a real machine.

They actually managed to get into the operating system of the ATM, and guessed the six digit password on the first try! Gee, when the password is 123456 you think there’s a problem? That was enough for them to get out of the system and go into the branch to share their information. But the branch staff didn’t take them serious. So the kids asked if it would be OK to get the proof and were told good luck trying.

Back at the ATM, they went back into the operating system and printed out the amount of money in the machine, the transaction history and the income made from surcharges.

They even changed the ATM surcharge down to a penny and the greeting to read: Welcome to the BMO ATM. Go away! This ATM has been hacked.

Back in the branch with all the printouts, the staff now realized they had a problem.

BMO Media relations stated in an email to the Calgary Herald that no customer information and contents of the ATM were ever at risk. Yea..right…

God can’t get credit?

A Russian immigrant by the name of God Gazarov can’t get credit. Yes, his first name really is God. He was named after his grandfather, and in Eastern Europe that first name is quite common. It’s kind of like many Latinos name their son Jesus.

But Equifax, one of the credit reporting agencies is refusing to accept his first name. As a result, they won’t open a file with his current credit references. No credit report – no borrowing, no credit cards, or car loan – something he tried to apply for last year. He now has a lawyer and is suing Equifax.

5 Short Insights

A week ago, the Fraser Institute released a report that showed how bad the financial situation is in Ontario:  The Ontario government debt is almost double that of California. They have only a third of the population (14 million vs. 38 million) and double the debt? California is really working on getting it down – Ontario seems to be really working on continuous increases. They’re already spending 10% of all their revenues on interest payments.

According to a BMO survey last week, 44% of Canadian homeowners intend to buy another home in the next five years. Boy, if that’s even close to true, that’s a lot of economic activity in the next few years! Not just for realtors and real estate prices but the average person spends over $10,000 on new appliances, renovations, etc.

Yesterday, the payday lender Cash Store Financial, with 510 stores, filed for bankruptcy. How sad (he says sarcastically). BC laws allow $23 of charges on a $100 payday loan. That wasn’t enough, as a BC court ordered them to pay back $1 million in overcharged fees. And then there’s the U.S. class action lawsuit and huge problems in Ontario…

I didn’t know a bunch of listeners have been saving thousands of dollars on eye glasses. I’ve heard from three people that Zenni Optical (zennioptical.com) and their $20 to $30 prescription glasses are actually a hit in the Okanagan! Can’t blame people…oh, and there’s another online seller now: goggles4u.com. For both, you’ll need to just enter your prescription with your P.D. (papillary distance) from your optometrist.