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Police make three arrests in phishing scam sting

30 Oct 2012

Three men believed to have been responsible for a mass phishing campaign targeting online bank users have been charged following a joint campaign by the Metropolitan Police's Central e-Crime Unit (PCeU) and the Serious Organised Crime Agency's (Soca) cyber division.

The Met Police confirmed one Nigerian and two Romanian nationals were arrested on Monday 29 October at a central London hotel and charged with conspiracy to defraud and launder money.

The three are believed to have been responsible for creating and placing over 2,000 phishing pages containing malicious coding on the internet.

The pages reportedly masqueraded as genuine banking websites and were designed to dupe unsuspecting victims into handing over their banking details.

The arrests come just before the creation of the Britain's new National Crime Agency (NCA) and National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU). The new agencies are intended to combat crime across the UK.

Detective superintendent and head of the PCeU, Charlie McMurdie, heralded the arrests as a demonstration of what the new agencies will be able to do when made active.

"This is the first joint operation between the PCeU and Soca Cyber as we move towards full integration and inception of the National Cyber Crime Unit on 1 October 2013," she said.

"The dynamic nature and successful outcome of this operation, which has prevented distress and financial loss to numerous UK victims, clearly demonstrates the benefit of brigading resources and expertise in this increasing and specialist area of criminality."

The arrests are the latest by UK police targeting those accused of phishing scams, with two citizens jailed earlier this year for a total of almost 10 years.

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Alastair Stevenson

Alastair has worked as a reporter covering security and mobile issues at V3 since March 2012. Before entering the field of journalism Alastair had worked in numerous industries as both a freelance copy writer and artist.

View Alastair's Google+ profile

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