The website ispoof.cc sold a subscription service to criminals.
The service allowed the scammers to make their phone calls appear as if from a number set by the scammer.
For example, you get a call from British Gas asking for a late payment and when you check – the caller’s number appears to be one of the British Gas authorised numbers.
But it’s been faked.
This is called spoofing.
Fifty nine thousand criminals signed up for the service (costing up to £5,000) and it is estimated they have conned around 200,000 people with help from the website.
Scotland Yard, the FBI and European law enforcement agencies teamed up to investigate.
The suspected mastermind behind the website is Teejay Fletcher and he is in custody, awaiting trial.
The victims were largely in the UK and America but some across Europe and Australia.
The website has been shutdown and the service stopped and in time those responsible will be sentenced for their crimes.
However, more and more of these operations need cooperation from law enforcement across multiple countries as the Internet respects no boundaries and certainly the criminals don’t.