Teenage cybercrime forum founder jailed

Teenage cybercrime forum founder jailed

A UK teenager who ran a Web site retailing stolen credit card details and cybercrime tools has been jailed for five years.

Nick Webber, 19 set up GhostMarket.net - the world's largest English-language online cybercrime forum - with the help of four accomplices.

Used by over 8000 members, the site promoted and facilitated the theft of card details, the sale of personal financial information, and the creation and exchange of malware and botnets. The forum also offered tutorials on how to commit cybecrime and evade the law.

During an eleven month investigation, police say they recovered more than 130,000 compromised credit card numbers, which at an estimated industry loss of £120 per card, could have led to losses of £15.8 million.

Webber, the son of a former Guernsey politician, was sentenced to five years in jail at London's Southwark Crown Court having already pleaded guilty to fraud charges.

Gang member Gary Paul Kelly, 21, was also jailed for five years, Ryan Thomas, 18 received a four year sentence and Shakira Ricardo, 21, 18 months.

Detective Inspector Colin Wetherill, PCeU, says: "The GhostMarket crime forum was used by thousands of computer criminals and fraudsters operating worldwide. Through it the defendants built an extensive criminal network to facilitate the wholesale trade of compromised credit card details, confidential financial and personal information, malicious computer programmes, and other sophisticated tools and criminal services."

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