Federal prosecutors have indicted the kingpin of Evil Corp, the identify utilized by a cybercrime gang that used the infamous Dridex malware to empty greater than $70 million from financial institution accounts within the US, UK, and different nations.
Maksim V. Yakubets, a 32-year-old Russian nationwide who used the deal with “Aqua,” led one of many world’s most superior transnational cybercrime syndicates on the planet, prosecutors mentioned on Thursday. The crime group’s alleged deployment of Dridex was one of the crucial widespread malware campaigns ever. The UK’s Nationwide Crime Company mentioned the syndicate used the identify Evil Corp.
Dridex was configured to focus on the shoppers of just about 300 completely different organizations in additional than 40 nations by automating the theft of on-line banking credentials and different confidential info from contaminated computer systems. Over time, Dridex creators up to date the malware to put in ransomware. Beforehand often called Bugat and Cridex, Dridex used zeroday exploits and malicious attachments in emails to contaminate targets. The malware was designed to bypass antivirus and different safety defenses.
Yakubets and one other alleged Dridex operator, 38-year-old Igor Turashev, additionally from Russia, allegedly used the captured banking credentials to order digital cash transfers from compromised accounts. Prosecutors mentioned the lads funneled the stolen funds into the accounts of cash mules who would transfer the funds into different accounts or convert them to money and smuggle it abroad. Yubets was the chief of the crime group, prosecutors mentioned. Turashev allegedly dealt with a bunch of roles, together with system administration, administration of an inside management panel, and oversight of a botnet that managed contaminated computer systems.
Confiscated photographs and movies launched by UK authorities present alleged members of Evil Corp dwelling massive. One photograph exhibits Yakubets and his bride celebrating their 2017 marriage ceremony with a lavish chandelier above them. Different photographs and movies exhibit costly sports activities automobiles.
Yakubets additionally stands accused of offering “direct help” to the Federal Safety Service of the Russian Federation, the KGB successor that is higher often called the FSB.
“Along with his management function inside Evil Corp, Yakubets has additionally offered direct help to the Russian authorities,” officers with the US Treasury Division mentioned. “As of 2017, Yakubets was working for the Russian FSB, certainly one of Russia’s main intelligence organizations that was beforehand sanctioned pursuant to E.O. 13694, as amended, on December 28, 2016.”