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Darkmarket "Google For ID Fraudsters" Website Shut Down

A website that was popular with online ID fraudsters worldwide has been shut for good thanks to coordinated action from a number of law enforcement agencies across the globe.

The three-year old website, called Darkmarket (their website is unsurprisingly closed (opens in new tab)) was a Vbulletin-based internet forum that allowed their members to engage in buying and selling of phished financial data that includes Credit card details, login credentials.

There was also a section that included applications and tools to carry out online ID fraud activities and was an invitation-only website which meant that only trusted sources would get a login and password.

According to Alexa (opens in new tab), the site was particularly popular in Lithuania, Turkey, the UK and Spain and experienced a spike in September, probably due to the global credit crunch which, according to experts, attracted an important number of phishing and baning fraud attempts.

The two year operation carried out by the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) and the FBI led to the arrest of 60 persons worldwide

SOCA said one of the criminals intercepted had spent more than £250,000 on purchasing personal data (ed: Could that be where the details of the 25 million Child benefit claimants be?) since last August and was planning on launching a massive project which would have netted him up to GBP 10 million.

These sites though tend to crop up quite easily and while Darkmarket.ws is down now, expect other Darkmarkets to be already in operation.

Désiré Athow
Contributor

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.