Police stops a dozen false hackers who scammed their customers 340,000 euros

The National Police has carried out an operation against a new criminal modality baptized as Hackstoration in which ten people have been arrested. The arreste

Police stops a dozen false hackers who scammed their customers 340,000 euros

The National Police has carried out an operation against a new criminal modality baptized as Hackstoration in which ten people have been arrested. The arrested published announcements in which they offered services to spy messaging applications, email accounts, debt elimination pending with the tax agency, elimination of fines of the DGT or change of notes on university servers, among others.

Once the victims hired these services, the detainees extorted them with the threat of revealing content from their private or intimate scope. During the investigation, records were practiced in Zaragoza, Barcelona, Girona, Santa Cruz de Tenerife and the palms of Gran Canaria, in which 40 mobile telephony terminals, 17 hard drives, three computers, five tablets and 24 pendrives were intervened. In addition, 176,775 euros of money sent by the victims have been intervened.

Research is the result of the active cyberpatrullage developed in social networks and open sources of information on the Internet. Specialized agents detected an ad boom in which sophisticated hackers offered different computer services, among which were to spy real-time messaging applications, email accounts and social networking profiles.

They also offered to eliminate data from the servers of the Tax Agency, ASNEF (National Association of Credit Financial Establishments), the RAI (Register of Unpaid Acceptance) or even the DGT (General Traffic Directorate), as well as Change of Notes Of the servers of the universities, recording of official graduations not taken and other deals of a similar nature.

The agents launched a police device for the investigation of said criminal phenomenon unknown so far. The arrangements made managed to identify more than 12,000 ads of this type and, associated with these publications, more than 40 telephone numbers, more than 200 email accounts and almost 1,300 IP Internet connection addresses were found.

Of the exhaustive analysis of the information obtained, the alleged commission of scam, extortion and discovery and disclosure of secrets could be determined. In addition, five differentiated focuses of participation in criminal facts were detected that, although they could have a specific connection, would develop their illicit activities in a decentralized manner.

The agents initiated five independent investigations in which it was detected, as a common link, the use of the same modus operandi. The arrested captured customers through the publication of advertisements offering computer hacker services and required the advance payment of the entire agreed amount or, at least a part.

Under the pretext of complying with the mission entrusted, the supposed hackers requested sensitive data, either from the interested party, well of the subject to which it was intended to spy on or violate their privacy.

After the shipment of the amount agreed by the victims, the contact was interrupted abruptly by breaching the agreed without apparent reason. When the victim intended to spy on someone's social networks or messaging applications, or in which the service that was hired was of doubtful legality, the contacts continued.

Given these situations, the false hacker wrote to those who had hired him, but now requesting new amounts of money under the threat of revealing the work they had commissioned them. For this, they showed customers screenshots of the conversations held in which they requested these services and facilitated the information that was required.

Although the victims paid the economic amounts required, the detainees continued to demand new payments, until they understood that this situation had no end and resigned to assume the damage derived from the discovery of their intentions.

Once the victim refused to make more payments, the false hackers fulfilled his threat and contacted with the part to which they intended to spy. In addition, they told them that they had information about their interest and showed them some content to see that it was true, and they also demanded the payment of an economic amount in exchange for knowing the complete information.

The evolution of the investigations allowed to detect a total of 21 bank accounts used by the criminals to receive the money sent by the victims. The study of the almost 3,000 banking movements reflected in them allowed the identification of 430 victims. In addition, the profit derived from this criminal activity has been quantified, ascending the total amount of the five focuses investigated to 341,000 euros.

Updated Date: 10 August 2021, 05:00

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