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Bespoke cybercrime network that stole $100 million dismantled by police

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THEHAGUE (Reuters) – Authorities in six countries have dismantled a cybercrime network that used malware to steal money to order for individual clients, fleecing businesses and financial institutions of an estimated $100 million (78 million pounds), Europe’s police agency said on Thursday.

The GozNym network accessed the computers of more than 41,000 victims, laundering the funds it stole through accounts held by its members in the United States and elsewhere, Europol said.

Ten of its members have been charged with conspiracy to steal online banking credentials and deposits under a U.S. grand jury indictment.

The defendants allegedly advertised their specialised technical skills and services on underground, Russian-speaking online forums.

“The GozNym network exemplified the concept of ‘cybercrime as a service’… (offering) money mules networks, crypters, spammers, coders, organizers, and technical support,” Europol said in a statement.

The operation against it began in November 2016 with a German-led action in Ukraine that dismantled the network’s servers and other infrastructure.

Criminal prosecutions have also started in Georgia, where it said the network’s leader – who it did not identify – will be tried, and in Moldova and Ukraine.

Five Russians charged in the U.S. indictment remain at large, Europol said.

(Reporting by Anthony Deutsch; editing by John Stonestreet)

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