'British FBI' celebrates first phishing fraud conviction

'British FBI' celebrates first phishing fraud conviction

The UK's newly-formed National Crime Agency has scored its first success with a five-year prison sentence for a female phishing fraudster.

Olukunle Babatunde, 27, of Croydon, South East London, was sentenced to serve five years and six months at Inner London Crown Court, after pleading guilty to a number of offences including conspiracy to defraud UK banks, financial institutions and their customers to the potential of £751,229.

In conjunction with another individual, Tamar Abdulhamid, aged 25, Babatunde also pled guilty to conspiracy to remove and conceal criminal property to the value of £64,535.

They were arrested in connection with an ongoing operation, investigating the distribution of stolen financial data obtained by means of organised international crime. Rogue phishing emails were designed to lure innocent victims into giving up their bank login details - which were to be re-sold on the underground black market.

The NCA - dubbed "the British response to the FBI" - was launched last week with a brief to tackle organised crime in the UK. It's investigative IT arm, the National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU) was launched at the same time to lead the UK's response to the threat posed by cyber crime.

Refelecting on the sentencing of Babatunde, Andy Archibald, head of the NCCU says: "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. 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".

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