(The Hosting News) – In what sounds like a pretty sophisticated hacking scheme, cyber criminals were recently arrested on charges of draining ATM machines to illegally inflict damage of $45 million USD on financial institutions.
According to a BBC report, the heist spanned 26 countries as the accused relied on falsified cards to hit at banks in Oman and the United Arab Emirates. Within less than 24 hours, those taking part in the heist had withdrawn $2.8 million from the machines.
Overall, 7 were in custody in New York while an additional suspect was thought to have been killed last month.
“As charged in the indictment, the defendants and their co-conspirators participated in a massive 21st century bank heist that reached across the Internet and stretched around the globe. In the place of guns and masks, this cybercrime organization used laptops and the Internet. Moving as swiftly as data over the Internet, the organization worked its way from the computer systems of international corporations to the streets of New York City, with the defendants fanning out across Manhattan to steal millions of dollars from hundreds of ATMs in a matter of hours,” stated U.S. Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch via a press release.
The cyber-attacks were referred to the Justice Department as “Unlimited Operations.” In such instances, attackers hack into card systems to remove withdrawal limits.
Charges include 2 instances of money laundering along with conspiracy to commit access device fraud. Money laundering carries a max prison sentence of 10 years while device fraud could add 7.5 years.