Tags: data | theft | Russia | scheme

Russian Charged With Running $100 Million Data Theft Scheme

Monday, 02 Jun 2014 03:35 PM

An accused Russian hacker faces U.S. charges over his suspected development of malicious computer software that cybercriminals used to steal more than $100 million from businesses and consumers since 2011.

Evgeniy Mikhailovich Bogachev, 30, ran a criminal ring responsible for Gameover Zeus and Cryptolocker, a form of malware known as ransomware, the U.S. Justice Department said today in court papers unsealed in Pittsburgh federal court. Zeus infected hundreds of thousands of computers worldwide, the U.S. said. Bogachev remains at large. He was last known to live in Anapa, Russia, and also owns property in Krasnodar, according to a Federal Bureau of Investigations Wanted poster.

“These schemes were highly sophisticated and immensely lucrative, and the cybercriminals did not make them easy to reach or disrupt,” Assistant U.S. Attorney General Leslie Caldwell said in a statement today.

The charges follow the arrests of about 90 people in more than a dozen countries last month in a U.S.-led crackdown on the makers and users of software designed to steal identities and remotely control computers.

Gameover Zeus allowed Bogachev to remotely control networks of infected computers, prosecutors said. A system infected by the program can be used to send spam, take part in denial-of-service attacks and harvest users’ credentials for online services, including banking, according to the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team website.

Million Infections

Early versions of Zeus software began appearing in 2007, the Justice Department said in its statement. Gameover Zeus, which first emerged in September 2011, has infected about 1 million computers worldwide, about 25 percent of which are located in the U.S, resulting in financial losses in the hundreds of millions of dollars, according to the U.S.

Victims included a composite-materials company in western Pennsylvania, an American Indian tribe in Washington and an assisted-living facility in eastern Pennsylvania, prosecutors said. A regional bank in northern Florida lost almost $7 million after an unauthorized wire transfer was initiated with credentials stolen by Bogachev’s group, according to court documents.

An arrest warrant has been issued for Bogachev, also known by the online nicknames Slavik and Pollingsoon, according to court papers. He faces charges including conspiracy, money laundering, bank fraud and wire fraud.

Cryptolocker Servers

Separately, U.S. and foreign law enforcement officials seized computer servers central to Cryptolocker in a joint operation in 10 countries including Canada, Germany, the Netherlands and the U.K., the Justice Department said in a statement.

Bogachev was indicted by a federal grand jury in Omaha in 2012 under the nickname Lucky12345. A criminal complaint issued there on May 30 ties the nickname to Bogachev and charges him with conspiracy to commit bank fraud related to his alleged involvement in the operation of a version of Zeus malware known as Jabber Zeus, the FBI said.

Gameover Zeus is a common distribution mechanism for Cryptolocker, which first emerged late last year and has infected more than 230,000 computers worldwide, according to court documents.

More than $27 million in ransom payments were made in the first two months after Cryptolocker’s debut, the Justice Department said.

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An accused Russian hacker faces U.S. charges over his suspected development of malicious computer software that cybercriminals used to steal more than $100 million from businesses and consumers since 2011.
data, theft, Russia, scheme
504
2014-35-02
Monday, 02 Jun 2014 03:35 PM
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