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Epic Games ‘hacker’ Mogilevich admits it was a scam operation

Ransomware rascals – scammers fake ransomware attacks to make a fast buck.

user icon David Hollingworth
Sun, 03 Mar 2024
Epic games ‘hacker’ Mogilevich admits it was a scam operation
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The Mogilevich ransomware gang has made a not-too-surprising announcement – it is not a ransomware gang.

It is, in fact, an elaborate scam – or so Mogilevich itself said.

The scammers made the admission under the guise of releasing data stolen from game developer Epic Games. But clicking on the link leads not to a trove of illicit personal information and source code, as promised, but to the gang’s big reveal.


“Unfortunately this link led you to an important announcement of our business instead of evidence of a breached database,” a Mogilevich spokesperson called Pongo said.

“You may be wondering why all this, and now I’m going to explain everything you need. In reality, we are not a ransomware-as-a-service, but professional fraudsters.

“None of the databases listed in our blog were as true as you might have discovered recently. We took advantage of big names to gain visibility as quickly as possible, but not to fame [sic] and receive approval, but to build meticulously our new trafficking of victims to scam.”

The fraudsters went on to talk about how they allegedly sold its fake ransomware infrastructure to eight would-be hackers – they even doubled the price of access at the last minute. As part of the scam, Mogilevich asked for screenshots of crypto wallets, ostensibly as proof it was serious. However, the gang then used those scans as evidence it had access to hacked wallets, making more money.

The gang recently posted that it had gained access to the network of drone-maker DJI and, from that, managed to trick a buyer out of US$85,000.

“The price for the alleged one-terabyte database was one hundred thousand dollars. We were immediately contacted by interested people, one of them was put at ease, as if he were the boss at the time,“ Pongo said, adding that the gang was able to convince this buyer that even a small leak of the data would be damaging, which was why no evidence was being shared.

“We made him believe that we had other buyers who were pressing us and that they wanted the projects as soon as possible.”

Subsequently, the scammers “allowed” themselves to be talked down to the smaller $85,000 figure.

“Now the real question is? Why confess all this when we could just run away? This was done to illustrate the process of our scam,” Pongo said. “We don’t think of ourselves as hackers but rather as criminal geniuses, if you can call us that.”

Of course, even this claim should be taken with a grain of salt. Regardless, Mogilevich appears to have taken a lot of people for a ride, including those cyber security outlets and analysts that wrote about the operation – Cyber Daily included.

David Hollingworth

David Hollingworth

David Hollingworth has been writing about technology for over 20 years, and has worked for a range of print and online titles in his career. He is enjoying getting to grips with cyber security, especially when it lets him talk about Lego.

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