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Five Charged In Largest Hacking Scheme Ever Prosecuted In US

samzenpus posted about a year ago | from the doing-the-time dept.

United States 84

wiredmikey writes "US authorities have charged four Russians and a Ukrainian five on charges of running a global hacking operation that targeted major payment processors, retailers and financial institutions. The charges stem from hacking attacks dating back to 2005 against several global brands, including the NASDAQ exchange, 7-Eleven, JC Penney, Hannaford, Heartland, JetBlue, Dow Jones, Euronet, Visa Jordan, Global Payment, Diners Singapore and Ingenicard. The men allegedly used SQL injection attacks as the initial entry point into the computer systems of global corporations. Once networks were breached, the defendants allegedly placed malware on the systems. According to the indictment (PDF), the malware used created a "back door," leaving the system vulnerable and helping the defendants maintain access to the network. The men face five years in prison for conspiracy to gain unauthorized access to computers; 30 years in prison for conspiracy to commit wire fraud; five years in prison for unauthorized access to computers; and 30 years in prison for wire fraud."

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Typo? (1)

gigaherz (2653757) | about a year ago | (#44388847)

"US authorities have charged four Russians and a Ukrainian five on charges of running a global hacking operation [...]

Re:Typo? (4, Funny)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44389005)

No, this is a Ukrainian copy of the Fox News show, the Five [foxnews.com] .
"But, Commies have been passing themselves off as MSNBC for years," complained the Ukrainian show.

Next: The Secret Seven (1)

flyingfsck (986395) | about a year ago | (#44389217)

So now that the Famous Five are in goal, the Secret Seven better look out...

Re:Typo? (1)

Zaelath (2588189) | about a year ago | (#44409569)

Fifth?

Charges Only if You're A Citizen (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44388877)

Otherwise, the US government and other allied governments practice similar activities all the time without oversight or penalty. Freaking lying, cheating, assholes. It's honestly all congress' fault, as they've given all of their power to the bureaucracies and other unconstitutional forms of government who are over powered.

All living congresspeople need to be tried for treason and face the maximum sentence for their blatant disregards, repeatedly, of the constitution that this country no longer seems to operate under. To prison with them all!

Re:Charges Only if You're A Citizen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389429)

I thought treason is a hanging offense? No? Or is it firing squad? Maybe Both? It should be.

Re:Charges Only if You're A Citizen (4, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year ago | (#44389553)

Your fault for Voting Republican/Democrat.

Honestly, Being in Congress should be by lottery and forced servitude. You cant get elected, it's a lottery and compulsory.. Dave Fox of 3124 Main Street, Chester,OH... YOU are the new congressional representative of your district for the next 2 years. An armed caravan will be there momentarily to pick you up.

It is the only way to keep it honest. Because voting for rich assholes is turning out to be a complete failure.

Re: Charges Only if You're A Citizen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389571)

Until they figure out how to rig the lottery.

Re: Charges Only if You're A Citizen (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year ago | (#44389813)

At that point we do it via thunderdome.... two men enter one man leaves, and is a Congresscritter for 2 years.

Re: Charges Only if You're A Citizen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392427)

And again we'll wind up with brainless thugs in office.

Plato's "Republic" tried to solve this (2)

ulatekh (775985) | about a year ago | (#44390597)

Not that anyone reads the classics any more...but Plato's "Republic" outlined a system where, the higher up one was in the political hierarchy, the more spartan their lifestyle was. The idea was to discourage people from entering politics unless their heart was truly in it.

Some of the aspects of the system were a bit totalitarian and heavy-handed, but still, it seems like it'd be a lot better than the god-awful mess we have now.

Re:Charges Only if You're A Citizen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44391931)

Your fault for Voting Republican/Democrat.

Honestly, Being in Congress should be by lottery and forced servitude. You cant get elected, it's a lottery and compulsory.. Dave Fox of 3124 Main Street, Chester,OH... YOU are the new congressional representative of your district for the next 2 years. An armed caravan will be there momentarily to pick you up.

It is the only way to keep it honest. Because voting for rich assholes is turning out to be a complete failure.

1) That's slavery, and
2) it doesn't prevent these representatives from being secretly bribed like they are now.

We'd be better off with delegated voting. As soon as your congressperson does ONE bad thing, you replace them with any alternative.

Re:Charges Only if You're A Citizen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392289)

1 - Wah.
2 - Collusion or bribery is dealt with by the Congressional Judges, they walk up and simply shoot in the head anyone doing such things. No warning, just BLAM and leave the body there for 24 hours so everyone can see what happens when you talk to a lobbyist.

Re:Charges Only if You're A Citizen (1)

Rakarra (112805) | about a year ago | (#44394289)

Wow. What a terrible dystopia you come up with. It's not easy to come up with a system worse than the current one, so... well done!

Re:Charges Only if You're A Citizen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44391973)

Ah, right, right, it's MY fault that all but a statistically insignificant amount of everyone else didn't vote the way YOU demanded they do. Self-centered much?

Re:Charges Only if You're A Citizen (1)

ArcadeX (866171) | about a year ago | (#44392911)

Dave Fox of 3124 Main Street, Chester,OH... YOU are the new congressional representative of your district for the next 2 years. An armed caravan will be there momentarily to pick you up.

And all of your assests will be liquidated and returned to you after your term, adjusted to reflect econmy performance.

Re:Charges Only if You're A Citizen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44396897)

They only care about getting rich off of there wasted college educations, something else that makes me laugh is how they are abusing the college systems to make profits, forcing students, and there parents to fork out hoards of money for a degree. Those degrees, which sew together the fabric of the economy, tax money, will never see the type of money/brides that these politicians get rich of off. It is a ponzi scheme, for assholes that think there position or there lack of knowledge has some how made them someone of significance.

The powers at be refuse to put term limits on these shit stains, in both your state congress and house as well as the nations capital, on top of that the voters have proven they do not care, if you gave a shit you would not vote, people think by voting for some moron party like the Tea baggers that it will lead to limiting the abuse of federal powers. It is the same game it always was, politicians talk a bunch of bullshit to the public of how your going to do this and that then behind close doors they are passing laws creating newer and far more powerful federal government. Or they pass some new law or bill, with a eye catching title, but the law/bill has done nothing to stop the problem, it is filled with loopholes and back doors to allow companies and themselves to get away with screwing people over.

I think C-SPAN should be eliminated, because politicians are only using it as a means of pathetic method acting, which the rest of the right/left wing media morons in the press eat up claiming how this is great...

Punishment out of proportions? (5, Insightful)

PerformanceDude (1798324) | about a year ago | (#44388891)

Even though the actions of these low-life, sewer-dwelling misfits angers me, I can't help but wonder why the punishment in the US is on a scale that you wouldn't even get for premeditated murder in most other countries. Aaron Swartz payed the ultimate price for such over the top threats of deprivation of liberty.

At what point does the punishment no longer fit the crime? Sure, confiscate all the profits, bankrupt them, take all their assets and lock them up for a couple of years. But 30-40 years? For real? Why not just send them to Mars or something? Locking them up for 5 years without access to computers would ensure that when they get out their hacking skills would be so redundant they could never do it again.

Isn't the justice system supposed to be about a balance between punishment and reformation - not about revenge?

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (5, Insightful)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about a year ago | (#44388903)

At what point does the punishment no longer fit the crime?

When the people controlling money are making the laws.

Snowden Kickback? (5, Insightful)

FriendlyLurker (50431) | about a year ago | (#44389077)

The indictment is from 2009. Two of the 5 men were arrested last year. The other three men are on the run most likely hiding out somewhere in Russia, and suddenly this is offered up as new "news" for the masses to contemplate. Could we be seeing some Snowden kickback - time to drag the words "Russia"/"Russian" through the dirt as much as possible for not handing over the US whisteblower Edward Snowden. The battle here is all about public opinion, after all - because they sure cant win against him based on morality, or even the law [guardian.co.uk] .

Re:Snowden Kickback? (1)

Zemran (3101) | about a year ago | (#44389137)

Why would they hide if they are in Russia? There is no option of extradition from Russia so they just get on with their lives. In reality they will wait a few years until they are forgotten and change their names to get a new passport in a new name and they will be free to travel etc. just like anyone else. The US likes to make out that it runs the world but it is only Europe and south America that can stop laughing when the US barks.

Re:Snowden Kickback? (1)

FriendlyLurker (50431) | about a year ago | (#44389179)

Maybe your right. Or maybe they have watched the US continually lower the bar for illegally kidnapping people [guardian.co.uk] ... (sorry it is called "extraordinary rendition" now). If not kidnapping then you never know when politicians will cut a deal that happens to includes your head...

Re:Snowden Kickback? (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year ago | (#44389559)

and you know that they are doing quiet assassinations as well.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44388943)

How much money did they _actually_ steal or cause to get stolen/lost anyway? Compare with how much MF Global stole:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MF_Global#October_2011:_MF_Global_transfers_client_account_funds_to_its_own_account [wikipedia.org]

On October 31, 2011, MF Global reported the shortfall in customer accounts at $891,465,650 as of close of business on Friday, October 28, 2011.[19][20] According to the trustee overseeing liquidation the shortfall may be as large as $1.6 billion.[21][22][23]

As of August 16, 2012, criminal investigators had concluded charges against Corzine, or any other of MF Global's former executives or employees would be unlikely

Yeah I know 160 million credit cards works out to a lot of damage depending on how you count it, but the MF Global bunch are walking despite actually taking and losing the money.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389779)

It will be impossible to determine an exact amount since they were trafficking in the ID data. However their clients certainly used/abused the ID data for various thefts. A better question might be: how many people's lives were ultimately ruined, or seriously damaged, due to their activity. Certainly, they played a part in stealing data they knew would be used in turn to do damage to millions of people. And in the long run, a lot of insurance companies paid for this, which got charged back ultimately to us citizens of affected countries. They took steps to hide it and themselves, made a lot of money doing it, and didn't care in the slightest who they hurt. Life in prison is the minimum they should get.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393355)

And how many people lost their motherfucking houses? Their jobs (after losing their houses)? I would say the banking crisi-- er, abuse, was at least equally as "bad".

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (2)

Thanshin (1188877) | about a year ago | (#44389049)

What causes more economic loss to a corporation? Murder? Or attacking payment processors.

You expect crimes to be judged by humane reasons while they are judged by economic reasons.

You probably also believe that all people should be equal, but you live in a world that clearly disagrees and believes people are valued by their economic value (both possessions and influence in the economy).

In some centuries, humans will have stories about the dark ages where the humans were judged by their economic value, just as we do about the times where they were judged by birthright or, even before, by brute force.

And these humans will probably live in a society with its set of flaws, to be corrected in the further future.

The only important objectives, as a society, are to survive and to improve. As long as we're doing both, everything's fine.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (4, Interesting)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | about a year ago | (#44389057)

Yeah, that's what I thought on reading the summary too. 30 years for wire fraud?

I read an interesting article in the Economist [economist.com] the other week. It suggested that countries where children are spanked tend to have populations that support harsher prison sentences.

People who as children experienced the “powerlessness” of frequent spankings report a disproportionately greater interest later in life to own guns, Mr Pfeiffer says. They also demand more draconian prison sentences, including the death penalty, for convicted criminals. And they seem more prone to violence themselves. In a study of 45,000 ninth-graders Mr Pfeiffer conducted in 2007-08, those kids who had been beaten by their parents were five times as likely to commit repeated crimes or to use cannabis, and missed school four times more frequently for ten days a year or more.

Scandinavian countries, in part inspired by the children’s books of Astrid Lindgren, the author of the popular Pippi Longstocking (pictured) series, were the first to make spanking illegal for teachers in the 1950s and 60s. Between 1979 und 1983, they also outlawed spanking by parents. Crime rates, gun ownership and prison populations have been falling since.

By contrast, spanking is still common in large parts of America, especially in the Evangelical milieus of Southern states. This is also where crime remains relatively high, gun ownership common, and incarceration excessive. (America’s incarceration rate is between eight to ten times that of northern European countries.)

Correlation does not imply causation and all that, but it's still an interesting theory as to why the US is so far out of step with the rest of the world on crime and punishment.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389301)

Correlation does not imply causation and all that, but I'm still going to infer it anyway, just because I want it to fit.

Fixed that for you.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | about a year ago | (#44389347)

Technically the author of the study inferred it, I'm just reporting it ;)

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

jrumney (197329) | about a year ago | (#44389385)

By contrast, spanking is still common in large parts of America, especially in the Evangelical milieus of Southern states. This is also where crime remains relatively high, gun ownership common, and incarceration excessive.

It doesn't take much research to see that gun ownership [wikipedia.org] is common in Scandanavia too, compared with the rest of the world. So in this case, it is not even a case of correlation != causation, but of a journalist making up "facts" to sell a magazine.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

argStyopa (232550) | about a year ago | (#44389735)

Well, the first thing I'd point out is that "Crime rates... have been falling since." is *also* true for those barbaric Americans that "beat their children". Gun ownership and prison populations not so much. And FWIW in populations in the US that are comparable to the nearly-homogeneous Scandinavian countries crime rates are pretty much the same.

It's funny, because my reaction to the story (before I read the comments) was that they should just give them the death penalty. This isn't "revenge" - it's utilitarianism. The electronic systems that carry our wealth today are nearly as vital to the modern economy as oxygen; someone attacking that for personal gain has displayed an unacceptable willingness to harm millions of others for their own benefit.

I *don't* believe that every person is a precious snowflake that needs to be protected and preserved. Humans (including myself, by the way) are little more than clever farm animals - generally pretty useful, and can/should be generally left on their own. However, when one of those animals behaves in a way that is deliberately and directly harmful to all of the others, they should just be eradicated as simply and without question as an unplanned pregnancy. Simple as that.

And yes, I believe that I was spanked as a child perhaps once or twice.
And yes, I have a concealed-carry permit on principle, although I've never owned a gun as I don't see the value exceeds the absolute increase in danger.
(to add a little more correlation for you)

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#44389787)

although I've never owned a gun as I don't see the value exceeds the absolute increase in danger.

You are aware that the old studies that purported to show that gun owners are more likely to get shot than non gun-owners have been completely and thoroughly debunked, aren't you? Your statistical likelihood of being a victim of gun violence has everything to do with your lifestyle.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

argStyopa (232550) | about a year ago | (#44399005)

You couldn't know it, but my calculus includes a family home with teenagers (themselves a risk group IMO) as well as one adult diagnosed and medicated as a depressive (not me).

Simultaneously we live in a 99.3% white rural community of 1500 in an affluent county in Minnesota. Our risk factors being the target for a home break-in or armed robbery are about as low as anywhere in the US.

While I agree with your point ceteris paribus, there is little imminent threat and strong reasons not to own one at this time.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#44405429)

You couldn't know it, but my calculus includes a family home with teenagers (themselves a risk group IMO) as well as one adult diagnosed and medicated as a depressive (not me).

Unfortunately, mine includes the same (teenagers plus one suicidal person). It just means that I keep my guns locked up.

Note that I'm not criticizing your decision, and wasn't to begin with. I just wanted to make sure you weren't basing it on incorrect information.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

datavirtue (1104259) | about a year ago | (#44390277)

for those barbaric Americans that "beat their children".

This reminds of an incident a friend of mine had in a Wall-Mart once. His son (a toddler) went crazy and he had to put the smack down with a little corporal punishment (yeah, in Wal-Mart). An older lady witnessed the event and sprung on him with some judgmental words. He snapped back and said that if he didn't spank him now that his son would sneak up behind her in ten years in slit her throat. He asked her if that is what she wanted. End of conversation. How is this relevant or on-topic? IDK

Here's another theory (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389785)

The largest, most powerful, most expensive government AND world empire (with military bases in some 150 countries around the world) needs to justify their lucrative business. At some point in the continuous expansion of this business, they will need to leave ethics and logic in the dust, and demand "tougher" everything. Coercive authority trumps common sense, and the power elite know this better than anyone.

To simplify, there's more money to be made in a police state than a free state. That's really all there is to it.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389799)

"30 years in prison for conspiracy to commit wire fraud; five years in prison for unauthorized access to computers; and 30 years in prison for wire fraud."

That's then 30 +30 years for wire fraud and conspiracy for it. Wow. Murder is 15 - life with most first time offenders getting the 15. They should have just killed some people.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (2)

arth1 (260657) | about a year ago | (#44390039)

That's then 30 +30 years for wire fraud and conspiracy for it.

Yes, and this is a problem with a system that allows consecutive sentencing. Obviously, the intent of setting the max to 30 years for wire fraud was to set the max to 30 years, not to set it to 60 years, but in reality, unless you operated alone, you can always be charged with conspiracy too.

And the prosecutors don't care one bit about what's "just" - they pile on anything that will stick. And the jury are in it to meter out revenge, not justice. So that leaves the judges, who are in the hand of whoever paid for their campaign.

The way prison sentences and incarceration rates increase here, it won't be long before we have to hire H1B workers to man the prisons, because we'll all be inmates.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#44390173)

I read an interesting article in the Economist the other week. It suggested that countries where children are spanked tend to have populations that support harsher prison sentences.

Sure. People stupid enough to support harsh prison sentences when it's been proven that they don't make people better people are also stupid enough to fail to understand that violence begets violence and that when you are employing violence because you are out of other options, you are a failure.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

Nyder (754090) | about a year ago | (#44392543)

I was spanked as a kid, I smoke weed (and done worse drugs), I've been to jail.

Ya, I blame the spanking, not that fact that I choose to do the actions that led me to jail and smoking weed. (Sarcasm here)

While upbringing does affect who you are, when it come down to it, you choose to do shit. No one forced me to be a druggy, no one forced me to shoplift, no one forced me to sell drugs. I choose that path. And it was a crappy path and I also choose to change it. And I did.

I didn't need a 12 step program, didn't need belief in a "higher power" to get clean. I need to be honest with myself and stop using (talking heroin here, was a junkie too long in my life).

I took charge of my life because in the end, I'm the only person to blame for anything I do or have done.

And for the record, I don't think spanking is a smart solution to disciplinary problems. And considering most my problems were based on me being ADHD (that no one knew about till i was in my 30's) and not a bad person, all the spankings I got (and I got a lot growing up) didn't serve any purpose but to bully me. So now I believe there is a better way to do things. But I don't have kids so the lessons I've learned, or the ideas I picked up, won't be put to test and passed on.

 

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

sosume (680416) | about a year ago | (#44389151)

It is strange that one can be convicted for both conspiracy to commit wire fraud and for the wirefraud itself. I thought the 'conspiracy to ..' is a provision in law for when no actual crime has been commited? Otherwise you can convice everyone twice, once for conspiring, and then again for the actual thing. Conspiracy to a DUI .. and then the DUI itself. Weird line of reasoning.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389371)

They will of course not be convicted of both. They are charged with both and its up to the court to decide which it is.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389737)

The difference between the two charges is that conspiracy is about working with others to help plot / plan / execute the wiretapping. Basically, they're charged with wiretapping, and helping others do the same.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

Blaisun (2763413) | about a year ago | (#44389819)

That is assuming that those charges are for the same crime. More than likely, with the laundry list of business hit, that they conspired on some, and actually performed others.....

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

metrix007 (200091) | about a year ago | (#44389311)

Of course it is. "Hackers" and copyright infringes often get more than murders and rapists while posing far less threat to society.

Something is seriously wrong.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389867)

I don't see the problem with the punishment being in proportion to what they did. It's one thing to rip off one person's stuff, quite another to steal from millions.

I think they're getting off lucky. If we limited the punishment to allowing everyone who was inconvenienced to give them the equivalent of one gentle slap in the face, those guys would be paste before the first 100,000 victims were done.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

Kookus (653170) | about a year ago | (#44389941)

Locking them up for 5 years without access to computers would ensure that when they get out their hacking skills would be so redundant they could never do it again.

I'm pretty sure the analogy to riding a bike applies to hacking. It might take a weekend to catch up on any syntax/language changes. SQL has been around for almost 40 years, and I'm pretty sure experts could catch up real quick if they were locked up in a box for the last 30.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44390485)

They left out one detail about the incarceration: the only computer in their cell is a cardboard model much like what you see in the furniture stores: permanently on, and asking for a password. Agreed, 30 to 40 years is excessive; they will lose their minds long before that sentence completes.

Re:Punishment out of proportions? (1)

Legal.Troll (2002574) | about a year ago | (#44397491)

They allegedly caused hundreds of of millions of dollars of theft and damages, including $300 million in theft/damages by just three of the corporate victims. They stole 160 million credit card numbers. They stole freaking Diners Club cards. So it is difficult to make any sense whatsoever of your suggestion that the "punishment" does not "fit the crime" given a possible 30+ year sentence.

Perhaps you are missing the point that such attacks can cause many times more $$$ damages than the crime rings take in profits, and that even if the responsible parties or some fraction thereof are somehow identified and brought to justice, often there will be nothing to "confiscate", the assets having been effectively laundered or simply spent already on things that can't be seized and sold. Altogether it's immensely destructive of real people's money and livelihoods, and it's not as if the victims can be somehow made whole just by "confiscating profits".

You seem to be under the illusion that since it was done via computer the crime wasn't "real"; perhaps this is misplaced pushback towards the idea of seeing theft of entertainment media as a crime. To remind you: that's not what was going on here. We're talking about people stealing money in extremely large quantities. That is one of the very essences of illegality that we punish people for.

At any rate, sentence are chosen only upon conviction and based on the facts as developed at trial, so there is no way to know without quite a bit of further analysis whether any of them could actually see such a sentence. Federal criminal sentencing is intended to serve a variety of purposes, including punishing the wrongful act and deterring its future commission, providing a sense of justice to the victims of crime, and impressing upon the defendant (and society) the seriousness of the crimes committed.

Ask yourself whether a man who has stolen 160 million credit cards is really going to be "reformed" after 5 years in prison, or whether that's just a quick trip back to Moscow with some sweet new tattoos and a new network of Russian American mafia/criminal friends with which to further his underworld career.

And then please, for the love of God, question your motives.

Too bad (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44388905)

Too bad about the "ever prosecuted" qualifier or the NSA would be so eligible.

On the other hand (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44388939)

The USA has a nasty habit of not submitting its own citizens to foreign laws but sanctions over Edward Snowden might result in Russia playing the same game. For some time Russia has been the cyber-criminal capital so sanctions would result in the USA shooting itself in the foot. Not that it would help these criminals; they were arrested in Holland.

Only 2 of the 5 apprehended (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44388989)

From the article: "Two of the five men -- Drinkman and Smilianets -- were arrested while traveling in the Netherlands last year and have been extradited to the U.S. to face charges. The other three remain at large."

I suspect that they'll go to some lengths to remain at large...

What about the bank leaks? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389007)

'Someone' broke into the banking system and leaked a selection of bank transactions for places like the British Virgin Islands with a story that these are tax-haven stuff, and then leaked a much larger file, many thousand times bigger direct to UK/Aus/NZ/Can full of *everyone's* bank transactions. Why aren't we hunting for these 'crooks' who broke in and stole all this financial info?

(April 2013 Leak of bank transaction data):
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2013/apr/03/offshore-secrets-offshore-tax-haven
IMHO this was NSA or GCHQ leaking emails and SWIFT data it intercepted, I worked on a system known as SEPA which is due to take over from SWIFT by next year and will secure Euro transactions from US surveillance. As soon as this leak happened it was just before a G7 meeting with the agenda of clamping down on tax havens. So it looked like lobbying fodder to force the outcome of that meeting and try to get access to SEPA.

(May 2013, G7 Nations agree to fight tax havens):
http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2013-05-11/news/39186824_1_tax-havens-transfer-pricing-rules-tax-authorities

And the Canadian Feds (and presumably the spooks too), as a result got access to the bank data:
http://business.financialpost.com/2013/05/10/tax-havens-probe-canada/

I'm guessing the NSA got a feed as part of 5 eyes:

"OTTAWA — The federal government says it will get access to relevant Canadian information stemming from a sweeping offshore tax-evasion investigation being conducted by the United Kingdom, United States and Australia."

See how it works? Collect all the info, use it as leverage to get more, leak against opponents, put friendlies in power.

Largest Hacking Scheme (1)

RivenAleem (1590553) | about a year ago | (#44389023)

I noticed how they qualified that with "Prosecuted in the US" since we know that the people behind the largest hacking schemes in the US will never get prosecuted.

Re:Largest Hacking Scheme (2)

Thanshin (1188877) | about a year ago | (#44389061)

"Kill one man, and you are a murderer. Kill millions, and you are a conqueror. Kill everybody, and you are a god." - Jean Rostand.

its just an excuse (2)

maliqua (1316471) | about a year ago | (#44389039)

they just wanna go to Russia so they can grab snowden in the airport on there way through

I am not a lawyer (1)

skovnymfe (1671822) | about a year ago | (#44389063)

So can someone explain to me how you can be convicted of both conspiring to do wire fraud AND for doing it? Doesn't the latter cancel out the former, or do you also get convicted of conspiracy to attempt a murder, attempted murder AND murder when you kill someone?

Re:I am not a lawyer (2)

Tyr07 (2300912) | about a year ago | (#44389109)

Conspiring can happen without doing wire fraud, you get charged for that.
Wire fraud itself, could happen without you conspiring with other people, therefore, is just wire fraud.

Plus they want to put as many charges on you as possible, and see which ones they're able to stick based on evidence.

Re:I am not a lawyer (1)

datavirtue (1104259) | about a year ago | (#44390863)

Reminds me of how people try to fix problems at work, a flurry of trying shit in the hopes that something fixes the problem. Logic and facts be damned.

Re:I am not a lawyer (1)

indeterminator (1829904) | about a year ago | (#44389139)

So can someone explain to me how you can be convicted of both conspiring to do wire fraud AND for doing it? Doesn't the latter cancel out the former, or do you also get convicted of conspiracy to attempt a murder, attempted murder AND murder when you kill someone?

Conspire to murder person A, attempt to murder person B and actually murder person C. Someone else can take the wire fraud analogy.

The nerve! (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389081)

How DARE they steal all that money before the bankers could steal it!

Hacking is irrevelant when the global economy went to shit. And the people who did THAT will never see the inside of a jail cell.

And now we spent even more finding these 'hackers'.

We are not smart...

this is related to the TJX hacks.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389159)

This is going to be the foreign criminals that gonzalez was referencing when he filed his habeas corpus petition a bit back (http://www.bankinfosecurity.com/gonzalez-seeks-guilty-plea-withdrawal-a-3527). He's an unindicted co-conspirator in the indictment, and there is some overlap in the crimes for instance the heartland hacks.

we are all subjects (2)

velco (521660) | about a year ago | (#44389161)

It's not about the money, it's about sending a message: Do not compete with the government. ;)

Re:we are all subjects (1)

trillion (246465) | about a year ago | (#44389325)

:)

how can you not though when they make the game too easy?

So, What Are You In For? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389255)

"Molesting a dead horse."

Confusing legal system? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44389285)

I'm not from the US but...how can you get charged for wire fraud, AND conspiracy to commit wire fraud? Surely it's you either did it, or you planned it? I don't see how you can get punished for both.

well fuck me!! (1)

thephydes (727739) | about a year ago | (#44389383)

If I pour crude oil into the ocean, destroy the livelyhoods of fishing communities and kill a few of people on an oil platform in a gas fire (and destroy some evidence), I'll get a couple of hundred $k fine. If I buy a gun and go out and shoot the same number of people (and survive the manhunt) I'll get the rest of my life being a jailhouse bitch. Now, I wonder which I would choose?? Haliburton, do you have any vacancies???

Re:well fuck me!! (1)

mjwalshe (1680392) | about a year ago | (#44389541)

or if your the state oil company you say "sovereign immunity - screw you gringo" which is what happened when the Mexican state oil co leaked even more oil than BP did.

Prepared statements (1)

EmperorOfCanada (1332175) | about a year ago | (#44389409)

Prepared statements have many advantages ranging from cleaner code to the huge security benefits. Why aren't these guys using them? Or is it more insidious in that the library that these guys are using for prepared statements has some kind of hole? I wish that a NTSB type group would examine these larger data breaches and produce a public report.

For example. I somewhat sanitize the input from users. But I do rely on prepared statements to make SQL injection impossible. Thus if library X.3 is somehow susceptible I would love to see reports showing that company X was hacked because of library Y. Now in theory I could go out and read the billion various security forums but they tend to be a wee bit obscure. But reports of actual events of an actual hack with the suggested changes that would have prevented that hack would be really cool.

Or are these programmers just that dumb. In that case it would be nice to name and shame the developers.

Re:Prepared statements (2)

Kal Zekdor (826142) | about a year ago | (#44389613)

Given the wide range of companies targeted by this group, I'm inclined to believe that there was some bit of underlying software they all used that had a vulnerability for the hackers to exploit. Otherwise I'm not sure I believe that 5 hackers alone managed to compromise diverse systems developed independently from each other; finding SQL injection vulnerabilities is like probing for weak spots in armor, it's a very time consuming process that can't be automated (decently) and often ends in failure despite considerable effort. Sometimes some idiot doesn't bother sanitizing inputs and makes it easy, but considering these are major international companies, I doubt every single one of the listed failed basic security measures.

What probably happened is that one of the hackers through some channel got hold of the source for some common bit of internal web portal code used by employees of these companies (stuff that isn't intended for public access generally has less security). They examined said source, and found an obscure (one would hope obscure) SQL injection vulnerability. They then searched for companies using the software, and leveraged the known vulnerability to compromise machines, gaining footholds in their internal networks. From there it's just a matter of figuring out what valuables you can get using your access.

Can get less time for robing the 7-Eleven with gun (3, Funny)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about a year ago | (#44389817)

Why hack 7-Eleven and get 30 years when you can do the easyer way of just going to one getting a gun out getting the cash and if you do go to lock it's likely to be state and less time.

Apple, Oranges, and Pears. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44390139)

Why hack 7-Eleven and get 30 years when you can do the easyer way of just going to one getting a gun out getting the cash and if you do go to lock it's likely to be state and less time.

Can you get $200 million at a 7-Eleven store?

I don't think that the matter is so much the tool that was used, but rather the amount of times it was used and the amount stolen. If you used your gun in a cross-country spree of dozens of 7-Eleven robberies, which ultimately netted $200 million, I'll bet you'd get 30 years to life.

The 30 years these hackers face is for dozens of counts of robbery(labeled wire fraud).

Re:Can get less time for robing the 7-Eleven with (1)

PPH (736903) | about a year ago | (#44391659)

Or use the Goldman Sachs ploy: Get Congress to except your chosen scheme from anti fraud, gambling and other statues. Then proceed to profit at will.

interesting (3, Insightful)

slashmydots (2189826) | about a year ago | (#44390125)

A monkey could write code that's not vulnerable to SQL injections. You'd almost have to try to add that vulnerability to your software these days because even my intern knows how they work and how to use stored procedures or even regex filters. So all they really did was point out companies that are completely inept when it comes to security.

Re:interesting (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44391303)

Anyone who suggests regex filters and does not mention PreparedStatements is most likely responsible for the gaping holes that occur everywhere.

Re:interesting (1)

DRMShill (1157993) | about a year ago | (#44391461)

Totally I mean look at these companies. The way they dress down their security. They're pretty much asking for it. I think the blame is 50 50 here. Also a computer's software has a way of shutting down legitimate intrusions.

Re:interesting (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about a year ago | (#44391799)

Yeah, it's 50% HR's fault for hiring and unqualified programmer and 50% the programmer's fault for writing it like crap.

Re:interesting (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393277)

If you are letting (or expecting) your intern use regex filters to prevent sql injection attacks, you have failed.

Let it be known... (1)

FuzzNugget (2840687) | about a year ago | (#44390459)

If you're going to steal from millions of Americans, make sure you're a big bank if you want to get away with it.

Obligator XKCD... (0)

ulatekh (775985) | about a year ago | (#44390707)

...about SQL injections [xkcd.com]

Why couldn't the NSA prevent this? (1)

ulatekh (775985) | about a year ago | (#44390723)

Given that the NSA has imposed a totalitarian surveillance state on us, why can't it stop these things from happening?
Sadly, the point of the NSA surveillance isn't crime prevention, it's political control.

Did the America I knew and loved ever really exist? Or were my history books just effective marketing campaigns?

Defense Attorneys (1)

Uebergeek (549636) | about a year ago | (#44390855)

Anyone know who the lawyers / firms are that are defending them in this action?
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