Australia backs FBI’s FIN7 takedown

Three members of the Carbanak Group indicted in US

Australian government agencies participated in a US-led effort to arrest alleged members of the Eastern Europe-based Carbanak Group, according to law enforcement and cyber security minister Angus Taylor.

The US Department of Justice overnight announced the arrest of  Ukrainian nationals Dmytro Fedorov, Fedir Hladyr, Andrii Kolpakov, who are alleged to be members of the FIN7 hacking group (also known as the Carbanak Group and the Navigator Group).

Each of the three has been charged with 26 felony counts in the US alleging conspiracy, wire fraud, computer hacking, access device fraud, and aggravated identity theft. 

FIN7 allegedly had dozens of members and used a front company, Combi Security, to help conceal its activities. The group primarily relied on phishing emails, with a Carbanak malware payload, to gain access to business networks.

Businesses in Australia are alleged to have been among the group’s targets.

“This operation is a great example of how the Australian Government is targeting cyber criminals wherever they are,” Taylor said.

“FIN7 is accused of hacking systems and stealing millions of customer credit and debit card details.

“Australian agencies are deploying their most sophisticated cyber capabilities, combined with traditional police work, to go after criminals and stop them from targeting Australia.”

According to the US government, FIN7 illicitly accessed the networks networks of businesses in 47 US states and the District of Columbia. A statement from the Department of Justice said the group stole more than 15 million customer card records from more than 6500 individual point-of-sale terminals at 3600 separate locations.

In addition to US and Australian businesses, organisations in the UK and France were also targeted.

“The three Ukrainian nationals indicted today allegedly were part of a prolific hacking group that targeted American companies and citizens by stealing valuable consumer data, including personal credit card information, that they then sold on the Darknet,” US Assistant Attorney General Brian Benczkowski said in a statement.

“International crime requires an international response,” Taylor said. “There is an ongoing global effort to crack down on cyber criminals who are targeting our businesses and hardworking Australians. 

“Australia has helped deal a body blow to a prolific international hacking group.”

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