British cyber scammer arrested in Palma de Mallorca for hacking 45 US companies

by Lorraine Williamson
cyber criminal
ASSSA

Agents of the Policía Nacional, in collaboration with the FBI, have arrested a British national, responsible for a series of cyber attacks on 45 companies in the United States. The suspect, a 22-year-old male, led an organised group focused on stealing corporate information and cryptocurrencies, acquiring approximately 391 bitcoins. These were valued at over $27 million.

The group’s method involved phishing techniques targeting individuals to obtain credentials that granted access to companies. These credentials were then used to access sensitive information or to take control of victims’ cryptocurrency wallets.

Palma airport arrest

The arrest took place at Palma airport as the suspect attempted to leave Spain on a charter flight to Naples.

The investigation, conducted by the Central Cybercrime Unit with support from the Balearic Headquarters, began in late May when the FBI’s Los Angeles office requested information from the Policía Nacional about a British citizen suspected to be in Spain. The suspect was allegedly behind numerous cyberattacks on U.S. companies.

Investigations revealed that the suspect had entered Spain in late May through Barcelona’s El Prat airport.

Phishing

The suspect led an organised group dedicated to corporate information theft and cryptocurrency fraud. Using phishing techniques, they obtained access credentials from individuals to infiltrate companies, seizing sensitive information and cryptocurrency wallets. This method allowed the group to control about 391 bitcoins, worth over $27 million.

As the Policía Nacional conducted their investigation, the FBI informed them of an International Arrest Warrant issued by a Central District Court of California. Consequently, efforts to locate the suspect intensified, confirming his presence in Palma de Mallorca.

A coordinated police operation culminated in the suspect’s arrest on May 31 at Palma airport as he was about to board a flight to Naples. At the time of arrest, he was carrying a laptop and a mobile phone, both of which were confiscated. The judicial authority has ordered his provisional imprisonment.

Also read: Spain defeats Israel at World Cyber Security Championship

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