RBS data thieves arrested in Moscow

24 March 2010

Three men suspected of stealing financial data belonging to Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) clients have been arrested in Moscow, a newspaper report has claimed.

According to the Financial Times, Viktor Pleshchuk has been detained by the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) for his part in a cyber-attack on an RBS payment processing unit.

Up to $9 million was taken from ATMs in 2008 after the hackers cracked an encryption code surrounding a payroll card system used by RBS WorldPay employees.

The FSB worked in conjunction with the US’s Federal Bureau of Investigation to charge Mr Pleshchuk, Estonian Sergei Tsurikov and Oleg Covelin of Moldova.

Don Jackson, a cybersecurity expert at SecureWorks, told the news provider: “I believe we are embarking on an era of genuine co-operation with Russian authorities.”

“Russian cybercriminals no longer follow hands-off rules when it comes to motherland targets, and Russian authorities are beginning to drop the laisser faire policy,” he added.

The attack took place in November 2008 and involved money being stolen from ATMS in over 280 cities.

By Jim Ottewill

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