The Metropolitan Police recently arrested five cyber criminals belonging to a cyber crime gang in Birmingham and Oxfordshire for deploying malware and associated fraudulent methods to target businesses and organisations across the UK.
The arrests were made late last week and involved the Met Police’s Cyber Crime Unit confiscating several devices owned by members of the cyber crime group who were aged between 29 and 53.
The arrests took place after the Metropolitan Police carried out a detailed investigation with help from the National Crime Agency’s National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU) and the European Cybercrime Centre (EC3). The investigations revealed that the cyber criminals were using powerful malware to defraud organisations and to carry out money laundering.
"This investigation has identified complex and sophisticated methods employed by an Organised Criminal Network (OCN) to target the cyber security of businesses across the UK," said Detective Chief Inspector Louise Shea, an officer at the Met Police’s Cyber Crime Unit.
"The Met has worked closely with colleagues from the National Crime Agency’s National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU) and the European Cybercrime Centre (EC3) during this protracted investigation, and we are pleased we have achieved this significant disruption to the activities of this OCN.
"Our officers work day and night to identify and arrest cyber criminals. This should send a clear message to those considering carrying out any form of cyber crime that we have the tools and methods to find you and arrest you," she added.
Increasing focus on cyber crime groups targeting citizens & firms
In December, the Met Police’s Cyber Crime Unit was also successful in nabbing a hacker in Brighton who masqueraded as a banking provider to defraud wealthy members of a private members’ club in central London.
Tony Muldowney-Colston, the cyber criminal, used specialised devices to gain access into genuine member accounts at the club and steal funds available within each account. Using this technique, he was able to gain access to funds in excess of £500,000 from the accounts he accessed.
"The scam carried out by Muldowney–Colston affected hundreds of people across the UK, and had the potential to affect many more. He is an audacious criminal who only recently was released from prison for carrying out very similar offences.
"He shows no concern for the welfare of any individual or organisation, and has made it clear he will use a range of methods to achieve significant financial gain for himself," said Detective Inspector Philip McInerney.