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Barclays Bank Insider Sentenced for Role in Dridex Plot

A former Barclays Bank employee has been sentenced to six years and four months behind bars for helping cyber-criminals launder millions of pounds of stolen funds.

Jinal Pethad, 29, from London, set up 105 fake bank accounts using false identity documents in a bid to trick the bank’s security processes, the National Crime Agency claimed.

He pleaded guilty this week to conspiring to launder money between 2014 and 2016 on behalf of Pavel Gincota and Ion Turcan.

The two, who were jailed in October, wanted to get rid of £2.5m stolen in scams using the infamous Dridex banking trojan.

Pethad was soon tracked down during the investigation into their activities and after officers raided his Edgeware home they apparently recovered over £4000 in cash, seven luxury watches and three mobile phones which had been used to communicate with Gincota.

In one of the exchanges between the two, Gincota apparently asked: “Can I bring 2 guys for open acc pls??? 1-german; 1-france; or 2-france; who u want? Let me know pls!”

“Jinal Pethad abused his position of trust at the bank to knowingly set up sham accounts for Gincota and Turcan, providing a vital service which enabled them to launder millions,” said Mark Cains of the NCA’s National Cybercrime Unit.

“Using his knowledge of the financial system, he made sure the stolen money was not blocked before entering these accounts, and provided the pair with reports to evidence his efforts and maintain the criminal relationship.”

The insider threat remains a major cybersecurity risk to organizations. Recent research from Crowd Research Partners found 90% of infosec professionals feel vulnerable to such attacks.

"We have worked with and supported the police with this investigation and welcome the outcome of the proceedings,” a Barclays spokesperson said. “Barclays has a zero tolerance to any unlawful activity and confirms Jinal Pethad was dismissed by the bank.”

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