The ring leaders of a criminal gang that used a Trojan to steal nearly £3 million from bank accounts have been jailed.
Ukrainian nationals Yuriy Konovalenko and Yevhen Kulibaba were each sentenced to four years and eight months at Croydon Crown Court after previously pleading guilty to conspiracy to defraud.
The pair led a gang that used banking Trojans to infect the personal computers of account holders and capture confidential information such as usernames, passwords and account numbers.
These details were then used to access the accounts and transfer money to accounts controlled by the gang. Authorities estimate that between September 2009 and March 2010 they tried to steal £4,286,559 and actually succeeded in taking £2,884,590.
Gang leader Konovalenko
The Met's Police Central E-Crime Unit (PCeU) says Kulibaba ran the operation from the Ukraine and was responsible for obtaining and allocating accounts to be attacked. Konovolenko was Kulibaba's right hand man in the UK, organising the establishment and operation of recipient accounts.
Following an investigation dubbed Operation Lath, at the end of September the PCeU arrested 20 people in London and the Home Counties. During house searches, computers, mobile telephones, false passports, banking documents and other exhibits were seized and later examined. In total, 13 people have been jailed over the scam.
DI Colin Wetherill, PCeU, says: "These defendants were part of an organised network of computer criminals operating a state-of-the art international online banking fraud, through which they stole many millions of pounds from individuals and businesses in the UK and United States.