United States announces takedown of $530 million cyberfraud network

Gladys Abbott
February 8, 2018

The group "targeted more than 4.3 million credit cards, debit cards and bank accounts held by individuals around the world and in all 50 states", said David Rybicki, deputy assistant attorney general in the Justice Department Criminal Division, in a statement. The group wanted to be known as the Internet's leading location for carding-buying retail items with counterfeit and stolen credit cards.

Like many major cybercriminal organizations, it was against the rules to buy or sell stolen access devices and other contraband belonging to victims within Russian Federation. Medvedev is among those arrested, according to the justice department.

Most of the organization, including five out of six of Infraud's leaders, remain at large. Its tagline: In Fraud We Trust.

In terms of scale of money stolen and worldwide reach, the DOJ said Infraud is among the biggest in the world.

Administrators managed day-to-day operation of and strategic planning for the organisation, approved and monitored membership, and meted out punishments and rewards to members.

Lower down were super moderators and moderators who served as subject-matter experts over specific topics or regions.

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Most of the members of Infraud never met in person and only knew one another through their usernames, he said.

Members used the forum to co-ordinate and commit online crimes including identity theft, bank fraud, wire fraud and computer crimes, he said.

Rybicki said over a seven-year period the organization cost U.S financial institutions upwards of $530 million. Infraud also provided escrow services that facilitated illegal currency transactions between members. Ukraine resident Svyatoslav Bondarenko, who's believed to have founded Infraud back in 2010, isn't one of them. He stopped posting on the site in 2015, but was indicted for his alleged role.

After a Las Vegas grand jury returned the nine-count indictment, federal, state, local, and global law enforcement authorities arrested 13 defendants from the United States, Australia, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Kosovo and Serbia. Significantly, those arrested include alleged kingpin Medvedev.

"Okeakpu was promoted to VIP member status in April 2014".

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