Can a carder get caught?

Millions of fraudsters at Mama: FBI stopped massive credit card fraud

For the gangsters, the website was a kind of "eBay of the thieves" ("New York Times"): for a long time they could trade the stolen data of hundreds of thousands of credit cards on undisturbed and thus secure the information for emptying entire accounts. However, the website was operated by the FBI and some of the buyers were undercover agents. According to their own statements, the US Federal Police succeeded in their biggest blow against dealers of stolen card data with searches in 13 countries.


The "carders" get their account numbers and security codes mainly from the Internet. The data from stolen and spied out cards is included as well as information from customers who unsuspectingly bought online. Some criminals then empty entire accounts, but skilful fraudsters only use them to shop, have cameras, laptops and DVD players sent home and paid for by others. Some deliberately stay below the limits at which the FBI intervenes. Unless the federal police recognize gang-like structures. Then the machine starts moving.

The investigators ensured exclusivity

"If cyber crime becomes more and more international, our response must also become more global and more powerful," said Manhattan's prosecutor Preet Bharara. Under the leadership of the FBI, the investigators built a whole fictional world for the credit card fraudsters. On they could not only trade stolen data. The investigators ensured exclusivity, did not let everyone in and kept the others busy with business. For example, they provided a digital camera in return for stolen data. He would have preferred a different model, one of the crooks let the agent know, both joyfully and unsuspectingly, "but hey, a free camera is a free camera!".

The website trap was open for almost two years and whatever was written - the FBI read it along. Now the investigators struck - on four continents, in 13 countries, including Germany. A total of 24 men were arrested. With the data from an incredible 411,000 credit cards, they could have caused damage of $ 205 million, says the FBI. According to the public prosecutor's office, the German arrested in Stolberg near Aachen has not yet found any indications that he was significantly involved in the credit card fraud. The man is still in custody because he has not paid fines from other proceedings.

Gangsters still lived with their parents

Many of the suspects are under 20 years old, the oldest in the US is 25 years old. Two minors were even convicted. So the bizarre situation arises: Many of the gangsters who, according to the FBI, wanted to cheat companies and customers out of tens of millions of dollars, still lived with their parents.

An 18-year-old had the data from 50,000 credit cards. He was arrested while trying to use an ATM. The young man had previously offered a special service: on request, he could provide private data from any person - for a processing fee, of course.

The cross-border campaign had shown "that hackers and fraudsters cannot count on being able to immerse themselves unscathed in the anonymity of the Internet, not even across borders," said prosecutor Bharara. "Cunning cybercriminals who believe they can work behind the supposed veil of the Internet will still be caught in the long arm of the law." (APA, June 27, 2012)