Taxi drivers wishing to pick up passengers at JFK usually have to wait in a parking lot before being directed to a specific terminal. The latter is done in the order in which they arrived. This system was introduced to create a fair working environment.
Two Americans allegedly broke into the taxi system in early 2019. They enlisted the help of Russian hackers. After gaining access to the system, they were able to move the taxi drivers they wanted to the front of the queue.
They interacted with the taxi drivers in question through group chat. They also provided tips on how to avoid the enforcers. Hackers charge taxi drivers $10 per trip to skip the line.
Prosecutors estimate that from September 2019 to September 2020, the men could handle 1,000 taxi rides a day. How often this actually happened remains under investigation.
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