An international criminal network that used malware to try to steal $100 million from more than 41,000 victims, has been dismantled after a law enforcement operation spanning several countries.
The gang used the GozNym malware to infect victims' computers, then stole online banking login credentials and took money before laundering it, according to Europol. Most of the victims were businesses and their financial institutions.
Europol worked with authorities in Bulgaria, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine and the US on the operation. A criminal indictment has now been returned by a federal grand jury in Pittsburgh charging 10 members of the network.
Authorities describe the GozNym network as 'cybercrime as a service' - with members who advertised their specialist criminal skills recruited on Russian-speaking criminal forums by the gang's leader, who controlled more than 41,000 victim computers infected with malware.
The gang leader and his technical assistant now face charges in Georgia. Other members face prosecution in Modova and Germany, while one has been extradited to the US from Bulgaria. Five are on the run in Russia.
US Attorney Scott Brady says: "The collaborative and simultaneous prosecution of the members of the GozNym criminal conspiracy in four countries represents a paradigm shift in how we investigate and prosecute cybercrime.
"Cybercrime victimises people all over the world. This prosecution represents an international cooperative effort to bring cybercriminals to justice."