A cyber criminal behind a £750,000 plot to defraud the financial sector by using financial details from 765 members of the public has been sentenced to five years in jail.
The National Crime Agency (NCA) confirmed the Inner London Crown Court sentenced 27-year-old Olukunle Babatunde, to serve five years and six months after he pleaded guilty to plotting to defraud UK banks.
Alongside Babatunde, 25-year-old Tamar Abdulhamid was also confirmed to have pled guilty to conspiracy to remove and conceal criminal property.
The two arrests follow an ongoing investigation by UK authorities into the distribution of stolen financial data by organised, international criminal groups. The groups included in the investigation are believed to run sophisticated phishing scams.
The scams operate by sending a number of phishing emails to a variety of victims. The emails are designed to dupe recipients into revealing their online banking login details. Once stolen the details are either sold on cyber black markets, or used to make fraudulent transactions.
The arrests follow a wider push by the UK government and law enforcement to combat cyber crime. Combating cyber crime has been a central part of the UK government's ongoing Cyber Strategy.
Since being announced in 2011 the strategy has seen the government and law enforcement launch numerous initiatives and strategies to help deal with cyber crime. These have included the creation of the NCA's National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU), which only launched earlier this week, and the creation of the Cyber Security Information Sharing Partnership (CISP).
Head of the NCCU, Andy Archibald, said the arrests were only possible thanks to information sharing schemes like CISP.
"This is an excellent result built on the joint working of precursor agencies and has involved the examination of a large number of data, resulting in 765 victim accounts being identified," he said.
"The National Crime Agency will continue to share information and intelligence with regards to serious and organised cyber crime, ensuring those who pose a threat to the public are identified and held accountable for their actions".
The arrests mark another early success for the NCA which was launched this week. It also helped arrest four men who are believed to have been involved in the running of the infamous Silk Road forum, which the FBI took ofline earlier this month.
Earlier this month senior architect at security firm FireEye, Jason Steer cited law enforcement's robust anti-cyber crime campaign as a potential reason only 0.016 percent of the world's known cyber attacks stem from the UK.
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