Global Arrests as $530m Carding Forum Folds

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Police have swooped on 13 individuals around the globe arrested on suspicion of involvement in a notorious carding forum.

A federal indictment was unsealed yesterday charging 36 for their alleged roles in the “Infraud” organization which is said to have caused over $530m in actual losses and $2.2bn in intended losses for financial institutions, merchants and individuals.

The site itself was founded in 2010 by Svyatoslav Bondarenko (aka “Obnon,” “Rector,” and “Helkern”) 34, of Ukraine, with the slogan “In Fraud We Trust.”

It appears to have functioned as a conduit between potential buyers and sellers of stolen identity information, financial and banking data, malware and other unnamed “illicit goods.”

The site also offered an escrow service to support illegal crypto-currency transactions for members, and screened vendors to ensure the quality of their goods, according to the Department of Justice.

The DoJ claimed that members of the organization had very clear roles within its hierarchy, ranging from administrators managing day-to-day operations such as membership and strategic planning, to moderators and super moderators. Even buyers were split into two tiers: members and VIP members.

As of March 2017, there were almost 11,000 members buying from the site’s vendors.

The operation to arrest the 13 was carried out by police in Australia, the UK, France, Italy, Kosovo and Serbia.

Acting assistant attorney general, John Cronan, claimed the indictment and arrest comprised one of the largest cyber-fraud prosecutions ever seen.

“As alleged in the indictment, Infraud operated like a business to facilitate cyber-fraud on a global scale,” he added, in a statement.

“The Department of Justice refuses to allow these cyber-criminals to use the perceived anonymity of the internet as a shield for their crimes. We are committed to working closely with our international counterparts to identify, investigate, and bring to justice the perpetrators of these crimes, wherever in the world they operate.”

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