Creators of the Bank-Credential-Stealing Gozi Virus Arrested and Charged
The dangerous Gozi malware effected more than 1 million people before the masterminds were caught.
The criminals behind the design and distribution of the Gozi malware which infected over a million computers around the world are being detained and have been charged with serious offences. The defendants, Russian, Latvian, and Romanian nationals, were responsible for infecting over 40,000 computers in the U.S., resulting in the loss of tens of millions of dollars. Even NASA suffered from the virus, having more than 160 of their computers compromised by Gozi. Before they were caught, the defendants managed to collect more than 3,000 usernames of banking victims.
As is the case with most malicious software, the virus was more often than not, emailed to victims as a PDF attachment which the victim proceeded to download, not knowing that it contained an embedded virus. Once installed on a computer, the virus was able to steal victims’ banking credentials while flying under the radar of antivirus scanners.
Web injects were also another aspect of the team’s criminal activities. The injects would alter the look of a banking website, asking the viewer to submit more personal information than usual. Query boxes asking for the victim’s mother’s maiden name, ATM account number, and birthdate were inserted into the log-in page of the bank site. Any information entered would be automatically stored to the criminals’ database for future use.
Each defendant is facing a prison sentence of 95 to 60 years.
Original article by Kim Zetter.
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