Thursday08 December 2022

Russia Shutters Four Marketplaces for Stolen Credit Cards on the Dark Web

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The Dark Web (whispered in Letterkenny) is a playground for all kinds of illegal activity. One well traded item is Personal Information including Credit Card numbers. Due to the state of security in most organizations (Stuart!) there is no shortage of personally identifying information and credit cards for sale. There is a lot of money that trades hands around this as well, so it has been and will continue to be a target for law enforcement in the constant battle against the financial threat actor groups.

There is good news in on this front though as Russian Authorities have announced the shutdown of four marketplaces on the Dark Web (whisper:TheDarkWeb). Combined the sites represented about 17% of the stolen credit card market with a combined revenue of about $263 Million in different cryptocurrencies. Not a bad day’s work.

The seizures represent an increased focus on the dark web and the marketplaces for illegal activity that happens there. Law Enforcement has been targeting all types of activity and not just forums to buy and sell stolen credit cards. A few other high-profile seizures and arrests include members of the REvil group responsible to several ransomware attacks, the leader of Infraud Organization, the closure of the CnadianHQ, among many others.

So far, the targeted seizures and arrests have accounted for roughly 50% of stolen cards sales on the dark web (whisper:TheDarkWeb). Still many analysists feel that this will not deter other markets from popping up. Nature abhors a vacuum so something will show up to fill the voids left after these closure (I’m surprised they’re not filling the voids right now). The reality is that if environments are left open, threat groups are going to continue to pilfer anything they can. Thanks to checkbox security policies and breach insurance many groups just do not see proper security as worth the investment.

All kidding and Letterkenny references aside, if there are things to be stolen there will be a need for markets to sell them. The authorities can close them all down today and new ones will pop up tomorrow. The only real way to slow the flow of this data is to enact real security policies and practices. If you can stop the original theft, there is nothing to sell.

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