Police fight regional cybercrime

26/12/2012

Several cyber hackers were arrested in the region, but local police are not revealing names.

By Mladen Dragojlovic for Southeast European Times in Banja Luka -- 26/12/12

photo

In the last two years, regional police agencies conducted several actions to break-up cybercrime networks. [AFP]

Several hackers in Southeast Europe are under investigation for allegedly taking part in a global cybercrime ring, a network of 11 million computers, causing over 644 million euros in losses.

The Botnet is a network of hacker-infected computers. Through malicious software, hackers are after credit card numbers, bank accounts and other personal information.

Police institutions in Republika Srpska (RS), Croatia, Great Britain, Peru, New Zealand and other countries are involved in the investigation, along with the US Justice Department and the FBI.

The RS and Croatia's spokespersons confirmed that investigation is ongoing and that names of hackers, for now, are not being released.

"In close co-operation with FBI, we conduct activities to uncover hackers in the RS and break up this criminal network. We'll be able to announce other information after investigations end," Mirna Soja, RS ministry of interior affairs spokesperson, told SETimes.

Croatia's botnet investigators also refused to reveal names or locations of the suspects. Jelena Bikic, police spokeswoman, told the media that Croatian police are co-operating with the FBI.

"Investigation is still in progress, but hopefully, police will soon hold an interesting press conference. Then we'll announce all details of the action," Bikic said.

In the last two years, regional police agencies conducted several actions to break various cybercrime networks. In June, RS police arrested Dragan Plavsic, a Banja Luka student, who hacked thousands of computers.

Plavsic seemed an ordinary student, relaying on financial help from his grandmother. But his Facebook page was replete with photos he took in Paris, London and other places he visited. Banja Luka county prosecution office recently charged him with cybercrime.

Gojko Vasic, RS police chief, told SETimes that the FBI has full confidence in the RS cybercrime prevention office.

"Two years ago, when the department was formed, experts successfully broke up one botnet network and found evidence of similar networks. We informed the FBI; they said that they have been trying to break up that network for months," Vasic told SETimes.

He added that FBI experts immediately arrived in Banja Luka and started a close co-operation with the RS Interior Ministry. Vasic said that this co-operation resulted in several other investigations and actions in the last two years.

Milos Jankovic, Banja Luka IT engineer, told SETimes that individuals usually do not begin cybercrime activity alone.

Related Articles

Loading

"There must be a group; no matter where in the world they may be. They create a small computer programme and attack computers worldwide via social networks. The programme sends personal information, such as credit card, bank account numbers, or similar information, to its creator," Jankovic said.

He pointed out that RS has many "IT brains" capable of launching cybercrime rings.

"It's easy money. The region is full of jobless but computer savvy persons. This way they can earn a significant income," he said.

Croatian police arrested several hacker groups in the last two years, and the Serbian police investigated similar groups.

This content was commissioned for SETimes.com.
Loading
Vote
 
 
  • Email to a friend
  • icon Print Version
  • Share/Save/Bookmark

We welcome your comments on SETimes's articles.

It is our hope that you will use this forum to interact with other readers across Southeast Europe. In order to keep this experience interesting, we ask you to follow the rules outlined in the comments policy. By submitting comments, you are consenting to these rules. While SETimes.com encourages discussion on all subjects, including sensitive ones, the comments posted are solely the views of those submitting them. SETimes.com does not necessarily endorse or agree with the ideas, views, or opinions voiced in these comments. SETimes.com welcomes constructive discussion but discourages the use of copy-pasted materials, unaccompanied links and one-line slogans. This is a moderated forum. Comments deemed abusive, offensive, or those containing profanity may not be published.

SETimes's Comments Policy

Focus on Ukraine

Reportage

Military medicine connects Balkan armiesMilitary medicine connects Balkan armies

Armies in the region have been improving their co-operation through joint military medicine activities.

SETimes logo

Most Popular

Loading
Loading
Loading

Poll

Lavdrim Muhaxheri of Kosovo shocked many by joining the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), beheading a young boy and posting the image on Facebook. Do you agree that his actions are not consistent with Islamic beliefs?

Yes
No
I don't know