DOJ, Europol bust GozNym cybercrime ring after attempt to steal $100M

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International law enforcement foiled a cybercrime network’s attempt to use GozNym malware to steal about $100 million from 41,000 victims, Europol said in a release Thursday.

The GozNym network exemplified the concept of “cybercrime as a service,” according to Europol, offering different criminal services like bulletproof hosters, money mules networks, crypters, spammers, coders, organizers and technical support. The network advertised its skills on criminal underground, Russian-speaking forums.

The malware attacks hit 11 businesses and financial institutions.

Ten members of the criminal network were charged by a federal grand jury in Pittsburgh with conspiracy to infect victims’ computers with GozNym malware, using stolen login credentials and stealing money from victims’ bank accounts. Investigations were carried out in Bulgaria, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine, with criminal prosecutions initiated in Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine and the United States. Five of the defendants reside in Russia and remain fugitives from justice, according to a release.

“International law enforcement has recognized that the only way to truly disrupt and defeat transnational, anonymized networks is to do so in partnership,” US Attorney Scott W. Brady said in a release Thursday from the US Department of Justice. “The collaborative and simultaneous prosecution of the members of the GozNym criminal conspiracy in four countries represents a paradigm shift in how we investigate and prosecute cybercrime.”

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