Police Seize £1m From UK Hacker

Written by

A Kent man sentenced last year to a decade behind bars for cybercrime and drugs offenses has been forced to hand over nearly £1m in cryptocurrency.

Grant West, 27, of Ashcroft Caravan Park, Sheerness, did not contest the confiscation order, served at London’s Southwark Crown Court on Friday.

The digital currency, which has a value today of £922,978.14, will now be sold by the authorities and used to compensate the victims of West’s cybercrime exploits.

He’s said to have launched cyber-attacks on over 100 companies around the world, phishing their customers for financial data which he would then sell on the dark web, generating profits in cryptocurrency.

One of these firms was Just Eat: West apparently targeted 165,000 customers in a phishing campaign that lasted from July-December 2015, costing the firm an estimated £200,000.

In his quest for lucrative personal data belonging to customers, West is also said to have attacked the websites of 17 organizations including Sainsbury’s, Nectar, Groupon, AO.com, Ladbrokes, Coral Betting, Uber and Argos.

West was finally arrested in dramatic style after officers tracked his girlfriend’s laptop IP address and boarded the train he was travelling on. That laptop apparently contained the financial details of 100,000 victims.

A search of his home revealed an SD card containing 78 million usernames and passwords as well as 63,000 credit and debit card details.

Known by the online moniker ‘Courvoisier,’ West also sold cannabis online and how-to guides for budding hackers.

“The [Metropolitan Police Service] MPS is committed to ensuring that individuals who are committing criminality on the Dark Web are identified, prosecuted and their criminal assets are seized,” said detective chief inspector Kirsty Goldsmith, head of the Met’s Cyber Crime Unit.

“I wish to thank our partners within the MPS and in both public and private industry who have all assisted with this investigation which was incredibly complex and lengthy. I am very proud of my team for bringing this offender to justice and ensuring we have secured this order.”

What’s hot on Infosecurity Magazine?