Massive International Police Operation - 4 Arrests - Ransomware

2,010Views 0Comments Posted 02/06/2024

A massive international police operation managed to take down ransom ware networks, with 4 arrests.  Infected emails were the culprit, in what they called the biggest-ever international operation against this lucrative form of cybercrime.  The European Union's judicial cooperation agency, Eurojust, said that police arrested four “high value” suspects, took down more than 100 servers and seized control of over 2,000 internet domains.  The huge takedown, codenamed Endgame, involved coordinated action in Germany, the Netherlands, Panama, France, Denmark, Ukraine, the United States and United Kingdom.  Also, three suspects were arrested in Ukraine and one in Armenia.  Europol pledged it would not be the last takedown.  Dutch police said that the financial damage inflicted by the network on governments, companies and individual users is estimated to run to hundreds of millions of euros (dollars). 


“Millions of people are also victims because their systems were infected, and we have witnessed these attacks in Panama, making them part of these botnets.”  Eurojust said that one of the main suspects earned cryptocurrency worth at least 69 million euros ($74 million) by renting out criminal infrastructure for spreading ransomware.  “Where cybercriminals previously used their ability to operate across borders to evade the arm of justice, operations like Endgame — coordinated across multiple jurisdictions — demonstrate that this evasion tactic is increasingly untenable." Police said that the actions should alert cybercriminals that they can be caught.  “This operation shows that you always leave tracks, nobody is unfindable, even online.” German authorities are seeking the arrest of seven people on suspicion of being members of a criminal organization whose aim was to spread the Trickbot malware. An eighth person is suspected of being one of the ringleaders of the group behind Smokeloader.  Europol said it was adding the eight suspects being sought by Germany to its most-wanted list.