The experts at Kaspersky estimated the losses by analyzing the information gathered from over 160 arrests of Russian-language speaking cybercriminals as well as data gathered during their investigation. Unfortunately, this data could represent only the tip of the iceberg, in many cases attacks are undetected and it is not easy to provide an estimation of the losses.
“With online financial transactions becoming more common, the organizations supporting such operations are becoming more attractive to cybercriminals. Over the last few years, cybercriminals have been increasingly attacking not just the customers of banks and online stores, but the enabling banks and payments systems directly. The story of the Carbanak cybergroup which specializes in attacking banks and was exposed earlier this year by Kaspersky Lab is a clear confirmation of this trend.” reads the Kaspersky’s report.
The experts noticed that the Russian underground has become even more crowded and despite the numerous arrests made by law enforcement a growing number of bad actors is finding cybercrime an attractive and profitable business.
More than 1,000 individuals have been recruited by the Russian cyber criminal rings over the last three years, most of them involved in the development of malware and set up of control infrastructure.
The researchers at Kaspersky have identified at least five cyber gangs focused specifically on financial crimes. We are facing with organized structures composed of 10 to 40 people which are operating for at least two years.
“At least two of them are actively attacking targets not only in Russia but also in the USA, the UK, Australia, France, Italy and Germany.” continues the report.
“All of these “products” and “services” are bought and sold in various combinations in order to enable four main types of crime. These types can also be combined in various ways depending on the criminal group:”
The experts observed that preferred currencies for transactions in Russian underground include Bitcoin, Perfect Money, and WebMoney.
The Russian cyber underground offers a lot of job opportunities for wannabe cybercriminals, there are offers for both skilled and novice people.
Skilled professionals can be recruited for programming and virus writing, web designing for phishing pages, ans testing. A category of individuals that is also requested are the cryptographers, which are hired as ‘cryptors’ for packing malicious code so as to evade malware detection.
“In general, employees involved in cybercrime can be divided into two types: those who are aware of the illegality of the project or the work they are offered, and those who (at least in the beginning) know nothing about it. In the latter case, these are usually people performing relatively simple operations such as copying the interface of banking systems and sites.” states the report. “By advertising “real” job vacancies, cybercriminals often expect to find employees from the remote regions of Russia and neighboring countries (mostly Ukraine) where problems with employment opportunities and salaries for IT specialists are quite severe.”
Skilled professionals can be recruited for programming and virus writing, web designing for phishing pages, and testing. A category of individuals that is also requested are the cryptographers, which are hired as ‘cryptors’ for packing malicious code so as to evade malware detection.
Give a look to the report … it is fully of interesting information on the Russian underground.
(Security Affairs – Russian underground, cybercrime)