Cyber Crime Investigation Goes International

Friday, July 30, 2010 @ 02:07 PM gHale

It took two years, but the FBI, and a multinational investigation, finally got their man as they held a 23-year-old Slovenian, who they said created malicious software code that infected 12 million computers worldwide.
Slovenian police detained and questioned the man, identified only by his code name Iserdo, ten days ago, in the northwestern industrial city of Maribor. Police released him after questioning, but said they have made sure he cannot tamper with evidence or flee the country. The investigation is ongoing and police have not formally indicted Iserdo yet.
Stephen Gaudin, a legal attache of the FBI to the U.S. embassy in Vienna, Austria, said the cooperation between the FBI, Slovenian and Spanish forces was ”unparalleled.”
FBI said Iserdo sold the malware to the operators of the Spanish Mariposa botnet a network of infected computers which stole credit cards and online banking credentials.
The now dismantled Mariposa botnet was one of the world’s biggest, infecting hundreds of companies and at least 40 major banks in 190 countries since appearing in December 2008.
Toni Kastelic, the head of Slovenian police cyber crime department, said police also questioned a 24-year-old person, and confiscated 75 computers in seven house searches.
Kastelic said the FBI tipped them off in April.
He would not identify the chief suspect, Iserdo, which read backwards, means ”salvation” in Slovenian.
Kastelic said Iserdo sold his code to customers, who paid between $130 and several thousand dollars for it, depending on the version. His chief buyers were from Spain, he said.
Police held Iserdo five months after Spanish police broke up the massive cyberscam, arresting three of the alleged ringleaders who operated the Mariposa botnet. They are facing computer crime charges.
The FBI said earlier this week this case was significant because it targeted the creator and operators of the malware. It also said more arrests are pending.
The only real thing known publicly about Iserdo is he was a former student of the Maribor Faculty of Computing and IT.

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