The Ukrainian national Oleksii Petrovich Ivanov (31) was extradited to the U.S. from the Netherlands and is facing charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud, and computer fraud.
The man is suspected to have carried out malvertising campaigns between October 2013 through May 2018.
Ivanov was arrested on October 19, 2018, by the Dutch police as a result of a joint investigation conducted by the U.S. Secret Service Criminal Investigations, the National High Tech Crime Unit of the Dutch National Police and UK’s National Crime Agency.
Ivanov ran the malvertising campaigns along with multiple co-conspirators. They used stolen identities to create fake companies and use them to register domains involved in the malvertising campaigns.
“This defendant engaged in an extraordinary and far-reaching scheme to infect and hack computers throughout the United States and the world,” stated U.S. Attorney Carpenito. “This ‘malvertising’ scheme is especially dangerous because it uses online ads to target millions of unsuspecting Internet users engaged in activities as routine as booking their next vacation.”
The DoJ cited as an example of malicious activity carried out by defendants a campaign run between June and July 2014.
The defendant posing as “Dmitrij Zaleskis,” CEO of a fake UK company called “Veldex Limited” paid a U.S.-based internet advertising company to spread malicious advertising. including two campaigns submitted on July 15, 2014 that were viewed or accessed approximately 17,328,129 times in a few days.
The campaign ran by Veldex Limited was repeatedly flagged as malicious, for this reason, the advertising company reached out to Ivanov but he managed to convince the firm to keep it running for months.
Ivanov and co-conspirators are also suspected to have run a malspam campaign that infected more than 100 devices in New Jersey.
“Cyber criminals who harm victims in the United States and around the world cannot rely on fake identities and international borders to evade justice,” said Assistant Attorney General Benczkowski. “This case and today’s extradition demonstrate that the United States and its international partners will find cyber fugitives and bring them to face justice in the United States, no matter where they commit their crimes.”