Dubai police crack international cyber ring
Four men arrested in connection with multi-million dirham exchange account theft
Dubai Police have arrested four men accused of being a gang of cyber criminals who managed to steal millions of dirhams from foreign exchange companies before being detained, Dubai media reported yesterday.
The gang, composed of Asians and Africans, hacked into company accounts and changed payment details, diverting funds to a number of accounts.
“Cheques worth more than Dh6bn have been found with the gang after their arrest,” said acting chief of Dubai Police Major General Khamis Matter Al Mazeina. He also said the suspects transferred Dh7m to accounts in their name.
Colonel Salem Khalifa Al Rumaithi, deputy director of CID for Search and Investigation said police were alerted to the gang’s activities earlier this month when tipped off about a $2m transfer from a company’s account. He said the transfer was accomplished through the hacking of company emails.
One gang member, an Asian national referred to as KS, was the recipient of the transferred money and received a 7% cut of the total amount as payment, Al Mazeina said. KS is currently in police custody.
Al Rumaithi said a second suspect, another Asian national identified as SK, gave the gang the details of the destination accounts, for which he received a 3% payment. SK has also since been arrested and confessed to his part in the operation.
The remainder of the appropriated funds was received by an African national, said to be the instigator of the fraud.
Lieutenant-Colonel Saeed Al Hajiri, director of the Electronic Intelligence Department said: “After wide and comprehensive search [for] the third suspect, and [surveillance of] the places he frequently visited for four days running, he was eventually arrested.”
The third man was referred to as DS, and described as the middleman between the second suspect and an Africa-based cyber gang.
“The suspect confessed to having participated in the fraud, and... remittances worth... Dh4.6bn were recovered, as well as IDs in different names.”
A fourth suspect, GD, an African national, was arrested following the detention of DS.