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The World's Top Cybercriminals

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the internet's-most-wanted dept.

175

bart_scriv writes "BusinessWeek profiles four individuals identified by law enforcement as the world's foremost online criminals. They're accused of crimes ranging from re-shipping rings to credit card theft and email fraud -- '...all are Russian. Strong technical universities, comparatively low incomes, and an unstable legal system make the former Soviet Union an ideal breeding ground for cyberscams. Also, tense political relations sometimes complicate efforts to obtain cooperation with local law enforcement.'"

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175 comments

Russian Local Law Enforcement? (4, Interesting)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365804)

Also, tense political relations sometimes complicate efforts to obtain cooperation with local law enforcement.
I've heard that in many places of the former Soviet Union, the "local law enforcement" only enforces laws when it suits their financial needs. I've talked to people from places like Lithuania and Russia and one of the many reasons they left was because justice has a price on the streets.

If you're caught doing something illegal, it's almost guaranteed there is some price you can pay the police to be let go.

In my opinion, this hurts local small businesses immensely. I believe that it makes them more difficult to succeed and lays the groundwork for an instable/weak capitalistic system. There's even a problem with local law enforcement and bribes in many other countries. Honestly, if there was one thing I think that would help countries get back on track, it would be better law enforcement especially on the local level. How can people be expected to work and thrive in a system when the letter of the law is uncertain? How can you expect them to run a business and distribute goods/services if a thief can pay off police when he burglarizes the store?

Re:Russian Local Law Enforcement? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15365838)

I've heard that in many places of the former Soviet Union, the "local law enforcement" only enforces laws when it suits their financial needs.

I've heard the same about many places in the United States.

Re:Russian Local Law Enforcement? (1)

base3 (539820) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365965)

Exactly. Volusia County in Florida comes immediately to mind.

Re:Russian Local Law Enforcement? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366204)

... and not surprisingly, look at where a lot of US spam originates: Florida and Las Vegas.

Re:Russian Local Law Enforcement? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15365982)

Ok, so where's your list of cybercriminals to back up your claim of lax law enforcement?

Right. Thought so.

Re:Russian Local Law Enforcement? (1)

Intron (870560) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366226)

here [spamhaus.org]

Re:Russian Local Law Enforcement? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366599)

and how is that link relevant to the discussion of russian local law enforcement considering the vast majority of those entries are from the united states and none of the "crimes" are local?

Re:Russian Local Law Enforcement? (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15365895)

Sounds like some libertarians' idea of a wet dream. Who needs government to enforce the law when you just pay some thugs to enforce it for you. Justice goes to the highest bidder! Capitalism at its best!

Propertyarain embracing the police and many laws (1)

mrraven (129238) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366673)

Mod parent up. The more materialistic a society is, the more "security" forces i.e. cops, i.e. repressive government it needs to protect individuals holdings of property, plus it needs complex contract law which equals bureaucracy and thick law books, etc. Libertarians need to make a CHOICE do you like liberty or material well being the best? If you like material well being be honest and call yourselves propertyarians and quite flim flaming people about liberty, it's a lie and it only makes you look bad when people figure out the truth. The fact that you believe the police who you normally hold to be bad repressive thugs suddenly become good when protecting your property shows your double standard. The same that you see thick books of contract law as not being evil bureaucracy which you would call ANY other thick law book.

Re:Russian Local Law Enforcement? (2, Insightful)

Pope (17780) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366036)

"In my opinion, this hurts local small businesses immensely."

More to the point, it hurts the CITIZENS immensely.

Re:Russian Local Law Enforcement? (2, Interesting)

regen (124808) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366175)

In some countries, the military and police are not fully funded by the government. The government requires them to develop a means to fund themselves. This results in the military and police running protection rackets. At least if both the police and military are doing this the provide competition to each other, but it is still pretty f*cked up.

Re:Russian Local Law Enforcement? (1)

Zontar_Thing_From_Ve (949321) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366176)

I've heard that in many places of the former Soviet Union, the "local law enforcement" only enforces laws when it suits their financial needs. I've talked to people from places like Lithuania and Russia and one of the many reasons they left was because justice has a price on the streets.

While I'm sure this was true of Lithuania, I can assure you that they would not have been accepted into the EU if it was still true. I'm not saying that there aren't crooked cops anywhere in Lithuania, but EU membership is conditional on cracking down on this kind of corruption and driving it down to levels where it's not noticeable. That's one of the specific things that may delay Bulgaria's membership in the EU - they haven't done enough to crack down on corruption.

Re:Russian Local Law Enforcement? (4, Informative)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366268)

You're absolutely right, and (not to toot the horn) this was directly recognized by the founders of the US. The term is 'the rule of law' and it is a predicate for a successful capitalist system.

The problem, though, is not law enforcement -- the problem is cultural. Flaunting the law is ingrained into many cultures*, and this causes the US-style capitalist economy to break, since, as you point out, there is not a level playing field.

*Very common in some of the poorer former Soviet states, where breaking the law was osmetimes necessary for survival. It just becomes habit to ignore the law, when the law makes no sense to the individual.

To put it another way, it's hard for people to respect government and the rule of law when for most of their lives, both have not served them well.

American ingorance? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366402)

In my opinion

I am very glad you have an opinion about a place you don't live and most liley have never even been to.

I lived in Leningrad (before it was St. Petersburg) and the local law enforcment cared more about rapists, murderers and drug dealers then people violating copyright law (much more common) or people with fraud scams with victims from other contries.

Go ask a beat cop in NYC (where I moved after Leningrad) which he would rather do, arrest the crack dealer who is peddling rock outside the school or track down the suburban kid who runs a botnet and steals credit card info.

Your attitude is typical of a middle class white american. You have no concept of things like poverty, REAL crime that does more then hurt a credit report and possibly cost $50, or what it is like to not have the world cater to you and your hedonistic needs.

The sense of entitlement in this country honestly makes me long for the days of living in poverty. At least poverty stricken people are grateful for the small things in life like indoor plumbing that works, heat in the winter, electricity that is not subject to random outages, and having a room over your head.

You make me sick.
.
.
.
.
Then again, many americans do.

At least a few years ago (1)

Beryllium Sphere(tm) (193358) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366404)

You couldn't do even legitimate business in Russia without having an under$standing with the authorities. If you tried, masked men with machine guns would break in to your offices and set about negotiating a better under$standing. Illegal business got mob protection or ceased to exist.

Nothing new there... (1)

CarpetShark (865376) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366607)

I've heard that in many places of the former Soviet Union, the "local law enforcement" only enforces laws when it suits their financial needs.


Yep. It's a terrible situation. But at least we can take heart, knowing that our countries all have something in common ;)

Block them at the firewall. (2, Insightful)

Trigun (685027) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365821)

If you needed a reason, there's a big one. Why deal with them if you don't have to?

great idea (1, Insightful)

JeanBaptiste (537955) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365850)

would you like me to show you how incredibly easy it is to set up a webserver in pretty much any country on the planet?

a webserver that could then be used for phishing scams and stuff. it could easily report all the data back to me in my home country.

you're going to have to think a little harder about the problem.

Re:great idea (2, Insightful)

Trigun (685027) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365926)

Not harder, bigger.

How can you set up a webserver in Malaysia if Malaysia is blocking your IP. My router won't do much to stop them, but mine, and yours, and theirs will. Shitcan all of Russia. Everywhere. Think of it as Digital Sanctions. Until the government shapes up, no data in, no data out.

Re:great idea (4, Insightful)

eln (21727) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366014)

Economic sanctions (and cutting off Internet traffic is definitely an economic sanction) tend to entrench bad governments, not overthrow them. In this way, they tend to have the opposite effect of that which is intended. Rather than inciting the populace to rise up against the government, both the populace and the government begin to blame the sanctions for everything wrong with the country. See: Cuba.

Russia has a lot of big problems, a lot of which can be traced back to its being basically an impoverished totalitarian nation for virtually all of its history, followed by a sudden transition into a new form of government (and economy) that they were not prepared for and had no history with. As a result, they are having issues basically with capitalism run amok without the benefit of effective controls.

The solution to this problem is more education among consumers here in the US (people who know how these scams work are less likely to fall for them) coupled with reforms in Russia that will make police less susceptible to bribery (higher wages and more training), and make criminals more likely to be caught and punished (technical training for police and harsh penalties for lawbreakers).

Re:great idea (3, Insightful)

MarkByers (770551) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366024)

Don't be ridiculous. You can't block an entire country just because of one individual. This could happen anywhere. Look at the amount of spam originating from America. The problem is more difficult to solve than just saying the government should fix it.

The great firewall of China does not work. (1, Troll)

hummassa (157160) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366057)

I Malaysia is blocking my IP, I use an open proxy in, say, Vietnam, and access the "page creation" site from my house. Simple as that.

Re:great idea (1)

biglig2 (89374) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366427)

You'd have to cut off international telephone lines too, of course, to stop them dialing out with modems.

For that matter, stop postal deliveries, in case they mail CD-ROMS. Oh wait, people could swallow USB sticks... better close the border. And build a wall.

Oh, but then... nevermind, let's just nuke em. I mean, we spent a lot of money on those ICBMs.

Better idea (was Re:Block them at the firewall.) (1)

Billosaur (927319) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365997)

If you needed a reason, there's a big one. Why deal with them if you don't have to?

The CIA and Special Forces need to sharpen their skills if they're going to find Osama Bin Laden; set them loose on these bastards. Black ops are the way to go. Even better, mercenaries. I'll start a collection. Let's see their hacking skills save them from a bullet between the eyes.

Re:Better idea (was Re:Block them at the firewall. (4, Funny)

geoffspear (692508) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366049)

Right, the US should send its military on incursions inside Russia.

You, sir, should be running the State Department. You're a freakin' genius. Or a shill for the bomb shelter industry.

Re:Better idea (was Re:Block them at the firewall. (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366180)

Let's see their hacking skills save them from a bullet between the eyes
Yeah, if I was in Russian organized crime, I'd really be shitting myself now.

...all are Russian (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15365835)

Nope, we also have NSA. Spying on _you_ today!

IN SOVIET RUSSIA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366006)

...oh, nevermind.

Re:...all are Russian (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366171)

They're not all Russian. I believe Emperor Pirk is a Finn.

hacker icons a Good Thing (3, Interesting)

Douglas Simmons (628988) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365842)

With their notoriety, hackers like these have created an entire industry that races to make computers more secure. Given that you'll always have a constant number of script kiddies that don't make the news, the result is more secure computers and more people with jobs in this antivirus market.

Re:hacker icons a Good Thing (4, Insightful)

misleb (129952) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365972)

Yeah, that is just what the world needs, a digital version of the military-industrial complex. How depressing.

-matthew

Re:hacker icons a Good Thing (2, Insightful)

winkydink (650484) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366648)

Um, wasn't the internet (as well as numerous other advances in digital technology) spawned by the military-industrial complex?

Re:hacker icons a Good Thing (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366265)

Problem is that there was no excuse for them to not have been secure in the first place. It's not like a login system with restricted rights was a really new concept only recently created.

Microsoft is squarely at fault here. They trained generations of users that security is not important in any way. Even now microsoft refuses to put the hammer down and force XP to not run with administrator level access. FORCE the users to use user or power user and not allow ANY writing to the c:/windows top level directory. Or do something innovative and make all user tasks only write tot he users directory so that it is impossible to infect the system unless you are an idiot and are running as administrator.

Active X is a nightmare hole that could have been easily plugged by not allowing disk access, same for the stupid scripting languages in all their products. MY word document does not need the ability to have full filesystem access yet it's in there.

This will force application vendors to actually write their software instead of re-hashing crap from the windows 95 days that need write access to the registery and system directories.

Until MSFT catches up to where operation systems were at in the 80's security is sill a major joke on the Windows PC They have to catch up and then force with threat of violence that Software developers quit sticking ANYTHING in the system directories.

Guess what, you have a wierd lib.dll put it in the application's directory and it works. Leave major library update to OS updates.

This simple fact has frustrated every single IT person on the planet for decades.

Similar to Russian nuke scientists (3, Insightful)

eviloverlordx (99809) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365859)

This issue is similar to the (existing) problem with Russian nuclear scientists taking their know-how with them to rogue states and terror groups. We need to get Russia to fix its economy, so that Russian programmers can get enough money legally. I think it's in everyone's interest to have them programing games, for example, than cracking systems and writing viruses.

Re:Similar to Russian nuke scientists (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366499)

We need to get Russia to fix its economy, so that Russian programmers can get enough money legally. ...or more effective, we should try to ruin their education system!

Moussaoui to USA: YHBT (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15365860)

LOL AMERICANS

YHBT. YHL. HAND. Guess what America: You lose. I win. Using Muslim cunning, tax-payer money, and your comically overzealous government I have trolled your whole nation. Allah be praised, you have never looked nearly as stupid as you do at this moment.

What were you even doing trying to put a man to death who was in jail on 9/11 2001? Dont you people usually insist on somebody actually managing to kill someone else before you execute them? You know, so that way the executioner isnt the only murderer in the room.

Whatever your reason for trying to murder me, I think we can all agree it has been a hell of a trial. Being the piñata of the American government is even more fun than it sounds. Allah be praised, if there is something even funnier than a typical American, it is an American who is given more power than he knows what to do with. I must admit however, I was impressed with your guest list. Rudy Giuliani, wow. Talk about a star-studded trial.

If there was one thing that really made my day though, it was the victims families. These people were the easiest to troll of all. Take my encounter today with a typical thoughtless American.

Thoughtless American: " It was just a dagger stuck in my heart, personally him not showing any remorse for what those terrorists did on 9/11,"

Me: " Maybe one day she can think about how many people the CIA has destroyed. ... You have a hypocrisy beyond belief. Your humanity is a selective humanity. Only you suffer."

If there is one thing I love about Americans, its how easy it is to get them to set you up for a great joke. Ill never forget the look on their face when I told the CIA that I was supposed to be the 20th hijacker on September 11th. It was like somebody had hit them in the face with a 737. Of course I had actually been cut from the team when then I turned out to be a lousy pilot. They already had enough box cutter holders so they told me they would call me for the second wave. I knew America would never allow hijacked planes to be flown in to buildings again, but still, their kind words made me feel a part of something. Considering tenjoyed it, you fucking infidels.

The World's Not So Top Cybercriminals? (5, Insightful)

0olong (876791) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365866)

By definition, the world's top cybercriminals will never be identified.

Re:The World's Not So Top Cybercriminals? (1)

Salty Moran (974208) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366019)

That doesn't make any sense. By what definition does the best criminal have to remain unidentified?

It's also completely illogical. In that scenario, if all cybercriminals were identified, there would be no "best" of the group, which is clearly not correct. Even if you're not very good, you could still be the "best". Being identified, then, certainly isn't sufficient to preclude from the "honor".

Re:The World's Not So Top Cybercriminals? (2, Insightful)

KingMotley (944240) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366183)

I would say by the definition that the "best" are the ones that are able to commit their crimes, cover their tracks (either through not allowing anyone to track their activities back to them, or better, to not even allow those who have been attacked be aware of the crime at all). Those who have been identified, aren't that good. They got caught. Being able to commit a crime is easy. Being able to commit it, and get away with it isn't (I don't consider being hunted by the FBI "getting away with it").

Re:The World's Not So Top Cybercriminals? (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366215)

By what definition does the best criminal have to remain unidentified?

By the definition that claims the best criminal is the one who remains unsuspected of crime.

Even if you're not very good, you could still be the "best".

Ah, well, now we're getting into the realm of the Platonic Ideal vs. the Pragmatic Shadow. However, the existence of the Pragmatic Shadow does not necessarily invalidate the definition of the Platonic Ideal.

KFG

Re:The World's Not So Top Cybercriminals? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366763)

I guess that makes a 16 year old kid viewing porn on the internet a better cyber criminal than Kevin Mitnick.

Re:The World's Not So Top Cybercriminals? (2, Insightful)

Rydia (556444) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366025)

Not really. Cybercrime and high-profile crime in areas with bad law enforcement are rarely that hidden. In Chicago, for instance, the police department up until recently actually posted organizational charts of the outfit so everyone in the department knew who they were.

The mafia and cybercriminals are very similar in that regard- you don't need to be hidden in a bunker somewhere, just be very good at separating yourself (be it through proxies, wardriven connections, a hired gang or expendable street thugs) from the instrumentalities of your crimes. "Everyone knows they did it" is nice, but it's not evidence.

Re:The World's Not So Top Cybercriminals? (1)

0olong (876791) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366624)

The mafia and cybercriminals are very similar in that regard- you don't need to be hidden in a bunker somewhere, just be very good at separating yourself (be it through proxies, wardriven connections, a hired gang or expendable street thugs) from the instrumentalities of your crimes. "Everyone knows they did it" is nice, but it's not evidence.

The mafia as a collective might derive some benefits from gained notoriety, but for a solo cybercriminal being identified is rather undesirable. Although identification does indeed not necessarily provide proof of your crime(s), it does in pretty much any circumstance limit some of your freedoms. Having the extra attention of law enforcement agencies requires you to be extra careful of how (much) you express yourself and limits your freedom of movement. Surely "top cybercriminals" who value a carefree lifestyle will try to avoid such a scenario.

Re:The World's Not So Top Cybercriminals? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366706)

So long as they keep the mask and costume on, what's wrong with enjoying a little notoriety?

Just for the confused... (4, Informative)

pla (258480) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365873)

For those who (like me) had no idea why "re-shipping" would break the law (except possibly as some cheesy customs violation), particularly to the extent that someone would count as a member of the top-four international cybercriminals...

The actual crime lies somewhere between (inclusive) credit card fraud and identity theft. The "shipping" part of that just helps launder the profits.

Just an FYI.

Putin and spam (4, Insightful)

joe 155 (937621) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365874)

we're never going to convince Putin that what he really wants to do is crack down on people who are bringing a lot of money into the economy and who pose no threat at all to him. Trying to fight this through any kind of court just won't work for this reason. The only way we can really hope to stop this kind of thing is to do more lessons in schools about how pretty much every e-mail which isn't from someone you know is a scam. I don't really know what your education was like in IT in American schools but I know that for the first 3 years of secondary school (UK) I had a teacher who couldn't adequately use windows explorer to find files - we always got told to open the "package" (sic) and then go file -> open... not once did they even mention security. In my last 2 years it changed round a bit and there was some information (although a frighteningly inadequate amount) about security best practices and what have you.
If we want to keep people from getting spam scammed then education is the best way

Cybercriminal? (0, Offtopic)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365885)

Is that anything like a cyberathlete?

Re:Cybercriminal? (1)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366012)

Is that anything like a cyberathlete?

Only if you cut-and-paste other people's code to get faster development cycle times.

Re:Cybercriminal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366466)

Oh, I'm sure there's a fat, greasy dipshit in some basement somewhere who will try to tell you that his MASSIVE SKILLZ at some idiotic video game makes him a cyberathlete, but that's no better than me claiming that I'd make a killer city planner because my SimCity scores are pretty high. In other words, no.

They've been noticed (0, Redundant)

greg_barton (5551) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365886)

Just the fact that we know their names means that, by definition, they're NOT the "World's Top Cybercriminals."

The best would remain unknown.

Re:They've been noticed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15365903)

Remember, you're not a criminal untill you get caught ;)

cat and mouse? (3, Interesting)

hackstraw (262471) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365897)


One thing I don't get about stories like this is why is it so difficult to go and pick up known "bad guys"?

You can look an Wikipedia and get a list of the big drug lords, read articles like this, or go to SpamHaus and see the list of the big fraud/spammers, but they keep doing what they do for a long time.

Is it because these people are so wealthy that its hard to get them? Is it because governments and law enforcement places are corrupt and get bought off or are part of the action as well?

Inquiring minds want to know.

Re:cat and mouse? (1)

saleenS281 (859657) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365920)

It's because we keep calling Russia a backasswords communist shithole. Suprisingly enough, Putin and company aren't all that willing to help us out when it comes to criminal matters. It's the exact same reason we wouldn't be too likely to let the KGB come into the US to extradite someone they were seeking. Why would they waste their time or money to help us? And they definitely aren't letting US soldiers on their soil...

Re:cat and mouse? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15365950)

Just because "everyone knows" they are "bad guys", does not mean the government has the right to throw them in jail. To put it another way, you don't want to live in the kind of country where the top dogs can decide to throw you away based on 'common knowledge'.

And of course, in countries with no rule of law, it is often the case that the "bad guys" and the government are in bed with each other.

Re:cat and mouse? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15365994)

The 'bad guys' get to use any methods they can think of to thier advantage. The 'good guys' are handicapped by the vary laws they are defending. You could argue that sometimes judgement should be used and the 'good guys' should go around the rules and just be done with it, however that leads down the road to more corruption. More prominent than corruption, however, is the chance that innocent people get punished for crimes they didn't commit. Enough of either and you end up with a very unhappy population.

Re:cat and mouse? (2, Insightful)

dr2chase (653338) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366069)

What's a crime, depends on where you are. Alcohol was illegal once in this country, and tobacco's plenty addictive (and cold-turkey from caffeine is no fun either). Suppose that Spain passed a law against anti-personnel land mines; you got any problem with extraditing the CEOs of US companies that produce these abominations to Spain for trial?

Re:cat and mouse? (4, Insightful)

Rydia (556444) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366097)

Evidence, evidence, evidence. Organized crime is brilliant at insulating those at the top from the orders they give those at the bottom. Even in countries where what they're doing is illegal (often not the case with spammers) you still need to tie that person to something through evidence.

RICO is nice in that you can nab higher-ups if you can get two predicate acts on an underling, but a) they tend to shelve said underling after he's busted, because they have lawyers too, and b) most of these acts are against people they've intimidated, cowed, blackmailed, or are criminals themselves, which means we get a missing person and not a murder rap.

You're vastly underestimating how difficult it is to get these guys, essentially you run detectives around looking into what they did, looking for the small screwup that lets them open an investigation and start searching places. It's long and it's tough. Like I said before, "everyone knows he's doing it" isn't evidence.

Difference between knowing and proof (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366525)

You can know that someone is up to something, and yet not be able to prove it, at least to the standard required in court. For example you've probably known about someone at school or the office who sleeps around. You are probalby quite sure it's true based on their actions and the gossip. However if I were to hold your feet to the fire and demand you prove it beyond a reasonable doubt, you couldn't do so.

Same thing for crime syndicates. The police have divisions, often called OCCB, that do nothing but watch these guys. By watching who talks to who you can figure out how the pecking order goes. However, that's not proof of anything. We have freedom of association in the US, so just because you are talking to some criminals, doesn't mean you are a criminal or that you did anything wrong.

Also it's not like they are always 100% correct about these lists. There are times where they peg someone as being involved with organized crime and they happen to be wrong, the person just deals with these people for whatever other reason.

Since we don't allow suspicion and inference to dictate criminal convictions, we have our current situation.

All are Russian... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15365910)

Except for the Ukrainian, Golubov. Ukraine is not Russia.
It's Ukraine.
Kuvayev, a 34-year-old native of Russia who uses the nickname BadCow, is one of the world's top three spammers, according to anti-spam group Spamhaus.
Well, the second worst spammer (BadCow is third) is Michael Lindsay, of iMedia Networks, California.

Its not surprising that they're Russian (and Ukrainian) if you choose to ignore the Americans.

Re:All are Russian... (2, Funny)

Viol8 (599362) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366009)

Most americans would have trouble finding europe on a map. Don't
expect them to do anything complex like trying to distinguish
between 2 seperate european countries.

Re:All are Russian... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366232)

Especially when those two countries used to be part of the same country.

Re:All are Russian... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366616)

yeah and I bet most europeans would have no trouble locating mississippi on a map.

Scam & fraud website (5, Funny)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365955)

From TFA: Postal Inspection Service officials are also investigating Smash's activity as a senior member of the International Association for the Advancement of Criminal Activity, which they describe as a loose-knit network of hackers, identity thieves, and financial fraudsters. Smash and another sought-after hacker named Zo0mer jointly operate IAACA's Web site, www.theftservices.com [theftservices.com], one of the most popular and virulent data trading sites, according to U.S. officials.

I wonder what would happen if I posted a link to www.theftservices.com [theftservices.com] on Slashdot. I mean, what happens to links like www.theftservices.com [theftservices.com] when they get posted to Slashdot? What effect would it have on www.theftservices.com [theftservices.com]?

I agree, medium business is more vulnerable (1)

djjoemex (971379) | more than 7 years ago | (#15365960)

I've seen in the report that many hackers are atacking big sized companies like Walmart, and I can see that this affects companies that haven't got the budget to obtain intrusion detection systems provided by companies involved in machine learning.

Today the advances in neural networks, genetic algorithms, data mining and expert systems can be used in big companies to prevent credit card fraud and spam. Many of this systems use combined searching techniques with genetic programming to give outstanding results.

The problem is that this kind of software is expensive and I haven't seen any bing company using open source for this kind of software so maybe the medium sized business must make an investment in open source technology to provide open sollutions for smaller companies in the future.

From the Article (2, Funny)

Orrin Bloquy (898571) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366050)

"Law enforcement officials in Moscow who wished to remain anonymous admitted that a large purple gorilla was still at large."

Strong technical universities, ... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366061)

Strong technical universities, comparatively low incomes, ...


For a moment there I though you were talking about India.

To quote one of the russian hackers... (1, Funny)

Gkeeper80 (71079) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366131)

"I am invincible!"

Re:To quote one of the russian hackers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366300)

Mod parent up! Goldeneye quotes deserve recognition.

Communisim Works! In theory... (1)

poormanjoe (889634) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366135)

Conspericy theory:
The hacker ringer leader had four computers. The goverment took three of them and gave the to his neighbors. In the traditional anarchist form black hat hackers posses, he teaches his three neighbors what he knows of duping fellow commrades out of there hard or not so hard earned money. Presto, you have the four top hackers of the world.

Ouch (1)

biglig2 (89374) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366480)

It's "cracker", not hacker. Oh, and your entire post made no snese whatsoever. But of course we expect - perhaps even insist on - the latter on Slashdot.

This is why you need a simple, efficient governmen (-1, Troll)

MikeRT (947531) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366194)

Governments today try to be everything to everybody and all they're good at is keeping the peace/killing people and breaking things. Don't believe me, just compare the quality of life in the Soviet Union in the 1980s to the United States. The more that government focuses on keeping the peace, arbitrating disputes, the more smoothly the economy can function.

You know why we're having an issue with the borders right now? Bush was so carried away with winning on domestic spending that he couldn't find the time or money to hire 10,000 new border patrol agents. Border security is a core function of the government. If you can't keep outsiders out of your country when they're not going through official channels, you have no real national security. Some defend him by saying we've not been attacked in years, so don't be paranoid, but I say, with that little security and that much distraction, how do you know we don't have a lot of sleeper cells in here now?

Limited government is advocated by us (classical) liberals/libertarians for a reason. The government can barely give two shits about the life, liberty and property of those outside the ruling class in the best of conditions. When it's trying to bribe people into loving it, then all bets are off and it frequently doesn't do its job or outright sides with the very people it ought to be pursuing (illegal immigrants, cybercriminals, etc.).

This is what is so fundamentally wrong with our "democracy." It has become a system of looting people people, not working for people. The government is more concerned about ensuring that a single mother has healthcare for her kids these days than making sure they don't get their heads blown off by thugs and corrupt cops (often they overlap these days). That's how far even the best have fallen. First principles like keeping the streets safe from vermin have given way to pandering to voters with shameless tactics.

Summary seems a little off... (1)

mmalove (919245) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366382)

"BusinessWeek profiles four individuals identified by law enforcement as the world's foremost online criminals. They're accused of crimes ranging from re-shipping rings to credit card theft and email fraud -- '...all are Russian"

Now, I don't always keep up with the computing world, but last I checked, Bill Gates was not Russian!

Although it certainly would explain a lot.

pfu... from TA (0, Offtopic)

mapkinase (958129) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366574)

A baby-faced 22-year-old Ukrainian,

Golubov held the title of "Godfather"


Every time I read the word "Godfather", I wish Piuzo and Coppola were executed publicly.

What a pathetic attempt at self-glamorization and self-aggrandizement supported by trashy media.

Russian, not Nigerian? (1)

dpilot (134227) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366587)

I would have thought that one of the top guys would either be Nigerian, or at least claim to be Nigerian.

I'm disappointed. I was SO eager to help repatriate some money.

the whole article is a crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15366591)

the whole article is a crap

from TA, again (1)

mapkinase (958129) | more than 7 years ago | (#15366665)

They meet in underground forums with names like DarkMarket.org and theftservices.com
Imagine an open business of "godfather" being named like "olives of ", but "Cosa Nostra". This never happened, did it?

Even the existence of darkmarket and theftservices is a joke and slap in the face of the common sense. Catch the person who registered those website and execute him publicly in front of Googleland.
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