[ISN] U.S. indicts two Russians for alleged hack

From: InfoSec News (isnat_private)
Date: Mon Apr 23 2001 - 15:19:42 PDT

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    By Robert Lemos
    Special to CNET News.com
    April 23, 2001, 1:45 p.m. PT
    Two Russians were indicted on computer-crime charges stemming from a
    rash of intrusions into the networks of banks, Internet service
    providers and other companies, a U.S. federal prosecutor said Monday.
    The two alleged network intruders, identified as 20-year-old Alexey
    Ivanov and 25-year-old Vasiliy Gorshkov, were indicted earlier this
    month on counts of conspiracy, wire fraud and violations of the
    Computer Crime and Abuse Act, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen
    The duo allegedly broke into the computer systems of several
    e-commerce companies, stole credit-card information and then returned
    to the companies as "consultants" to charge for fixing the flaw.
    "After they hacked into the system, they would communicate with the
    system administrator and ask to be paid for information regarding the
    vulnerability," said Schroeder, the prosecutor assigned to the case
    for the Western District of Washington.
    Among the victims in the case are Internet service providers
    Speakeasy.net of Seattle and San Diego-based CTF as well as the Los
    Angeles-based U.S. subsidiary of South Korea's Nara Bank. Schroeder
    said that evidence also linked the two to the theft of 15,700
    credit-card numbers from Western Union last September.
    Federal authorities say they also found evidence that the two intended
    to create a Web page made to resemble the site of online cash-transfer
    service PayPal to nab credit card numbers from more victims. However,
    it's unknown whether the scam was ever attempted.
    International crime spree
    The duo's alleged exploits largely match the details of a warning
    issued by the FBI in March regarding the activities of organized
    hacker groups in Russia and the Ukraine. The advisory blames the
    international groups for online break-ins at 40 companies in 20
    Schroeder said much of the information in the advisory came from
    details revealed by the FBI and the Department of Justice during their
    investigation of Ivanov and Gorshkov. He added that the arrests, at
    most, scratched the surface of computer-crime circles in Russia.
    "There is not just one group in Russia," he said. "And I'm sure that
    we didn't get this entire group."
    Internet sting operation
    Federal authorities say they arrested the two Russians after an FBI
    sting operation lured them to the United States with promises of a job
    with a fictitious company.
    The FBI started the sting operation in July after it had identified
    Ivanov as a suspect, said Schroeder.
    "We communicated with them and set up a system and invited them to
    probe the system," he said, adding that when the two cracked into the
    computer, law enforcement officials noted what vulnerabilities they
    Over several months, law enforcement managed to convince the Russians
    to come to the United States to join the company. When they arrived in
    November, they were arrested.
    Currently, Gorshkov is being held without bail in Seattle until his
    May 29 trial. Ivanov has been remanded to Connecticut authorities to
    face charges there.
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