FBI Take-Down of Fake Security Software Sellers


In 2011, an FBI and international cybercrime initiative set out to seek and disrupt hacker organizations.

Operation Trident Tribunal was born, which included the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice and  authorities from many other countries including Canada, Cyprus, France, Germany, Latvia, the Ukraine, Lithuania, The Netherlands, Romania, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Operation Trident Tribunal targeted specific sophisticated business enterprise believed to have the ability to steal millions and found to be associated with criminal gangs responsible for selling $72 million in fake Antivirus programs to over 960,000 computer users.

The money was made by selling software that claimed to find security risks on PCs and then asked for cash to fix the non-existent problems.

Operation Trident Tribunal, seized more than 40 computers used to host Web pages and conduct fake scans designed to scare people into believing they needed to purchase bogus security software to clean their systems. Raids conducted in Latvia enabled police to seize five bank accounts that were apparently used to funnel money to one gang of scammers; other accounts were seized in Cyprus. Latvian authorities also arrested two people accused of running one of the gangs.

The FBI says users were victimized by the scheme, paying prices of up to $129 for fake software to resolve the problems.

Good riddance to a lot of thieves and their scam.

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