Feeds

US arrests 130 in Net fraud crackdown

Operation E-Con

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Boost IT visibility and business value

More than 130 people were arrested and $17 million in assets seized in a US crackdown in Internet fraud announced last Friday.

Codenamed Operation E-Con, the bust is coordinated by 43 United States Attorney's Offices nationwide, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Secret Service, and Customs Enforcement and a number of other federal state and local law enforcement agencies both in the US and a number of other countries worldwide.

Online crimes can include multimillion-dollar swindles, online auction scams, identity theft, business-opportunity frauds, and piracy of software and other copyrighted material.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, Internet-related fraud has grown from 31 per cent of fraud complaints three years ago to account for almost half (47 per cent) of the 218,000 fraud complaints filed last year. This trend is expected to continue.

"Cyber swindles and dot cons present new challenges to law enforcement," said Attorney General John Ashcroft. "The Internet enables criminals to cloak themselves in anonymity, making it imperative that law enforcement act more quickly to stop newly emerging schemes before the perpetrators can disappear in the World Wide Web."

Operation E-Con has conducted more than 90 investigations involving 89,000 victims and estimated losses of more the $176 million. Additionally, Operation E-Con has executed more than 70 search and seizure warrants that has led to the formal charging or conviction of more than 130 individual subjects.

Last week alone, federal agents arrested 50 people and executed 55 search and seizure warrants that have resulted in 12 guilty pleas and allowed United States Attorneys to charge 48 individuals by indictment, information or criminal complaint.

"In recent months, the FBI has reshaped its entire cyber program to strengthen our ability to investigate online crime. Operation E-Con is a sign of our growing capabilities and commitment," said FBI Director Robert Mueller.

"High-tech scam artists who think they can hijack the Internet should think again," said Assistant Attorney General Michael Chertoff of the Criminal Division. "The Department of Justice will track them down and prosecute them the same way we've gone after traditional hucksters."

The FBI has published a breakdown of the various scams targeted by Operation E-Con here. ®

Related Stories

ID theft: a $1bn a year crime
Feds break massive identity fraud
Trainee dishwasher pleads guilty to $80m identity fraud
Bloomberg hacker convicted of extortion
Smart credit card scheme kicks off in the UK
Computer crime sentences are 'not good enough'
419 scammers move into the French air disaster market

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate
Some assignments, even the Bongster decline must
Fast And Furious 6 cammer thrown in slammer for nearly three years
Man jailed for dodgy cinema recording of Hollywood movie
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Ballmer leaves Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media
Yanked footage featured British-accented attacker and US journo James Foley
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Call of Duty daddy considers launching own movie studio
Activision Blizzard might like quality control of a CoD film
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?