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November 28, 2021

Prosecutors dismantle cybercrime ring

According to a press communiqué issued by Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT) and quoted by Agerpres, the searches were conducted in Bucharest (6), Constanta (3), Sinaia, Pitesti, Braila, Craiova, Sibiu and Fintea commune, Dambovita County. The investigators seized several PCs and data storage devices. The persons taken in for hearings are investigated for forming and adhering to an organized crime group, unlawfully accessing computer systems in order to obtain information, unlawfully owning computer programs and causing material damages by presenting false information in order to obtain material gains. The crime group was set up by Ghica Alexandru and Ursu Mihai Valentin from October 2010 to April 2012. 11 persons adhered to it. The two obtained the data of several SIP and VOIP accounts that they used in order to call surcharge phone numbers abroad (Great Britain, Germany, Spain, Taiwan, Sierra Leone etc), obtaining 10 to 15 per cent of the call’s value. Likewise, the members of the crime group unlawfully accessed servers, obtaining information about accounts that they then used in order to call surcharge phone numbers offered by Hong-Kong and Cyprus-based companies. The damages caused surpass EUR 4 M. Of that sum, the members of the crime group received more than EUR 400,000, representing some 10 per cent of the total damages caused. During the same period, one member of the group illegally accessed the Kaspersky website, seriously disrupting its activity and causing damages of USD 2.5 M to the American company. “At the same time, it was ascertained that Etcu Petru and Ghita Eugen George engaged in phishing activities by posting car sale announcements on US websites and asking the persons interested to pay in advance. The two then used the information obtained in order to transfer the sums to their own accounts,” the communiqué adds.

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