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FBI's fraud site spawns UK arrests

Sting nets cybercrooks

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Police have arrested five people in the UK in the last few days in connection with a web forum used to trade credit card details and personal information.

Some 56 people have been arrested worldwide - 11 in total in the UK - in connection with the DarkMarket forum. The Serious Organised Crime Agency ran the UK part of a worldwide investigation led by the FBI.

It emerged earlier this week that the forum was actually being run by the FBI, and had been since at least 2006. German radio station Südwestrundfunk first revealed that the site was being run by an FBI agent based in Pittsburgh.

Rumours about the authenticity of the site started in late 2006 when a hacker noticed that the site administrator, Master Splynter, had logged in from the National Cyber Forensics Training Alliance in Pittsburgh. Master Splynter was named in leaked FBI documents as senior cybercrime agent J Keith Mularksi.

The FBI said the site, at its peak, had more than 2,500 members. The Feds said investigations were continuing thanks to leads from the forum, which was closed earlier this month.®

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