FBI busts two multimillion dollar malware rings

first_imgWhile it might not be awesome on the scale of Microsoft’s dismantling of the Rustock botnet and triggering a massive downturn in global spam, the FBI’s successful actions against two international malware rings is, nevertheless, very welcome news.According to the Bureau’s own blog post, one of the dismantled organizations and its scareware succeeded in convincing more than 960,000 people worldwide to cough up as much as $129 each. In total, victims were bilked out of $72 million by misleading pop-up ads and fake antivirus and system optimization software. Because of the massive scale of this particular syndicate, authorities will continue investigating both in the U.S. and abroad.AdChoices广告The second takedown targeted two individuals who represented themselves as an ad agency and secured a banner ad spot on a prominent Minneapolis newspaper’s website. Once approved, the duo swapped their original ad code for something more nefarious, pushing the paper’s visitors to sites which pumped malicious apps onto their systems — resulting in $2 million of ill-gotten profit.“Operation Trident Tribunal” involved cooperation among a dozen countries — Ukraine, Latvia, Germany, Netherlands, Cyprus, France, Lithuania, Romania, Canada, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the U.S. In addition to the arrest of two as-yet-unnamed individuals, a truckload of computer equipment was seized including 40 computers and servers, and bank accounts which were tied to the individuals involved were also seized.Though the Operation has only scratched the surface of the global malware problem, it’s a step in the right direction. Microsoft has been pushing for the prosecution of cybercriminals like these for years, so it’s good to finally hear about a massive success like this one by the FBI.More at FBI.govlast_img read more