A Russian hacker was arrested earlier this month on suspicion of extortion and breaking into a US bank's network.
Identified only as Nikolai, the suspect was arrested in Surgut, Siberia on 15 January after breaking into the web server of Online Resources, a company that provides online banking services.
According to police, the hacker used this information to access a bank in New York.
Nikolai then threatened to publish account details unless the bank agreed to pay him $10,000. To add to his threat, Nikolai published 1,500 account details online. The bank agreed and paid the money in December last year.
But Moscow police were able to track him by his IP address on emails back to his house in Siberia.
The suspected hacker is in custody but is likely to be tried only on extortion charges.
The Moscow Times reported that Nikolai was unlikely to be charged for the bank's total financial losses, estimated at $250,000. If convicted of extortion he faces up to 15 years in prison.
A spokeswoman for the Moscow computer fraud squad quoted in the Moscow Times said that Nikolai is a "21 year-old university dropout who hacked into a bank in the state of New York from his home computer".
No details about the bank have been released.
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