Russian Dark Web Mastermind Sentenced to Nine Years for Cybercrime
Dark Web hacker, Aleksei Burkov was sentenced to nine years for running an illegal cybercrime circle. Aleksei found guilty by the U.S court on the 26th of June as he was selling exclusive memberships for a website called “Cardplanet” which provided stolen credit card information.
Burkov was considered to be of personal interest by Russian President, Vladimir Putin.
$5000 Exclusive Membership Fee
“Many of the card numbers offered for sale belonged to U.S. citizens. The stolen credit card data sold on Burkov’s site has resulted in over $20 million in fraudulent purchases made using U.S. credit card accounts.”
The Memberships were issued only on invitation by other club members. Participants can run classified ads for stolen goods or illicit services. This exclusive member fee was used to filter and hide from the eyes of law enforcement.
“To obtain membership in Burkov’s cybercrime forum, prospective members needed three existing members to “vouch” for their good reputation among cybercriminals and to provide a sum of money, normally $5,000, as insurance. These measures were designed to keep law enforcement from accessing Burkov’s cybercrime forum and to ensure that members of the forum honored any deals made while conducting business on the forum.”
Aleksei was Previously Arrested for Cybercrime
In 2015 Burkov was arrested in Israel. According to the New York Times, There were possible discussions to exchange Burkov to an Israeli American named Naama Issachar who was arrested in Moscow airport in 2019 for keeping few grams of marijuana in her luggage.
However, the Israeli Supreme Court had already decided to extradite Burkov to the U.S. This left Israeli Prime Minister with limited options. Ultimately exchange took place for Alexander Courtyard in Jerusalem that used to belong to the Russian Empire to Russia.
It was revealed that the site operations have started during the early stages of Bitcoin where it was not much popular. During the time operations were carried out using centralized online payment systems like Western Union, WebMoney, etc. This has made the investigator’s job much easier in tracing the site operations.
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