Dealing with computers we have heard for sure the word “virus”: I am not an expert in informatic science, but I know that there are some computer programs which could damage our pc and most of them could infect a lot of computers, sometimes millions of them. This is the case which I would describe to you.
On January 23 of the current year three alleged International Cyber Criminal are responsible for creating and distributing a virus that infected over 1 million computers and caused tens of millions of dollars in losses charged by Manhattan Federal Court.
This “bad program” is called “Gozi”. His creator is a Russian guilty to computer intrusion, but there are also the GoziCode Writer who has been arrested in Latvia and Host of Servers that facilitated and shielded the distribution of Gozi and other Viruses and Malware arrested in Romania.
It is big. Maybe the biggest infection in the era of Computers.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) announced recently the “unsealing of Indictments against three individuals who played critical roles in creating and distributing the Gozi Virus, one of the most financially destructive computer viruses in history. The Gozi Virus infected over one million computers globally and caused tens of millions of dollars in losses”.
Approaching us to the characters, in the sentence of the U.S. District Judge Leonard B. we could find the name of Nikita Kuzmin, a Russian national who created the Virus and was arrested in November 2010 and guilty of various computer intrusion and fraud charges in May 2011; another one was Deniss Calovskis , a Latvian national who allegedly wrote some of the computer code that made the Gozi Virus so effective, arrested in Latvia in November 2012; in the end we have Mihai Ionut Paunescu a Romanian national who allegedly ran a “bulletproof hosting” service that enabled cyber criminals to distribute the Gozi Virus, the Zeus Trojan and other notorious malware, and conducted other sophisticated cyber crimes, was arrested in Romania in December 2012.
Juridical Effects of Gozi
The case against Paunescu is being prosecuted jointly with the Department of Justice’s Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section (CCIPS), which is overseen by Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer. Mr. Bharara thanked CCIPS for its important partnership in this matter, and he also thanked the Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs. Mr. Bharara praised the FBI for its outstanding work in the investigation, which he noted is on-going.
But what did the virus?
He took additional information to online banking costumers, such as their Social Security number, mother’s maiden name, driver’s license, ATM number and date of birth. For this reason millions of dollars were stolen and a sensitive numerous of personal information has been published on the web.
They made a big problem, maybe the biggest hacker attack to personal information and to the bank system. In fact this case should serve as a wake-up call to banks and consumers alike, because cybercrime remains one of the greatest threats we face nowadays.
The FBI’s investigation, which began in 2010, involved the help of law enforcement and intelligence authorities in Latvia, Romania, Moldova, the Netherlands, Germany, Finland, Switzerland and the UK.
In addition to the arrests, authorities seized 51 servers, laptops, desktops and external hard drives.
To “sense” the capacity of this case, we can take a look to what the Hackers have to face up exactly, if convicted: 95 years for Kuzmin, 67 for Calovskis and 65 for Paunescu.
We have to take care of our personal information, but sometimes we cannot handle with something that we don’t know and which is more of what we usually deal with.
For sure, the computer era introduced good things connecting the people all over the world, but also bad things such as the high numerous of hacker attacks to the simple “user” such as the most citizens of the various Nations.
But what can we do to protect ourselves in a better way? Is that sure, buying a new Antivirus and be in safe?
I haven’t the answer for this. I know only that some big personalities like Michelle Obama have been victim of hacker attack: in fact they have stolen bank documents and datas and personal mobile number, all this has been published in to the Internet.
If she has been victim, with her security and privacy which is bigger than all other people, how can we be sure for ourselves?