Ukraine Fights Cryptojacker in Massive Joint Operation Across Europe


A 29-year-old man was taken into custody by Ukrainian police with the help of Europol for his involvement in a significant cryptojacking operation.

Ukrainian officials, assisted by Europol, have apprehended a 29-year-old man suspected of running a massive cryptojacking operation, marking a major step forward in the battle against cybercrime using cryptocurrencies. Europol and an unnamed cloud provider worked together to carry out the operation in Mykolaiv, Ukraine, on January 9.

The unnamed individual is suspected of breaching more than 1,500 cloud accounts in order to illicitly mine cryptocurrency. More than a million virtual computers were created as part of this complex system, and their resources were used for substantial cryptocurrency mining. A “sophisticated cryptojacking scheme” was how Europol characterized the operation in a statement they issued on January 12.

The suspect was able to set up a large-scale mining operation after gaining administrator capabilities in these cloud accounts, according to investigations. It has been discovered that TON cryptocurrency wallets were used to transfer cryptocurrencies worth over $2 million (€1.8 million) that were produced illegally. An important tip-off from the cloud provider led the Ukrainian cyber police to examine three sites; they played a vital role in the operation.

Showing how efficient international coordination is in combatting cybercrime, the culprit was successfully apprehended. The European Cybercrime Centre (EC3) of Europol established a virtual command post to provide the Ukrainian National Police crucial forensic analysis and assistance. There is growing international alarm about the proliferation and rising complexity of crypto theft, and this collaborative strategy highlights that worry.

When it comes to crimes using cryptocurrency, the situation in Ukraine is far from unique. The illegal BTC-e exchange and the hacking of the Mt. Gox cryptocurrency exchange were both brought to light in June of last year by Russian citizens. This case illustrates the worldwide scope of cryptocurrency crimes and concerns 647,000 bitcoins that were laundered after the Mt. Gox hack.

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