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4 charged for cyber scam costing $147.6m

Sydney police have arrested four cyber criminals after they were caught running a scam that’s cost victims worldwide over $147.6 million (US$100 million).

user icon Daniel Croft
Wed, 14 Dec 2022
4 charged for cyber scam costing $147.6m
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The AFP was tipped off to the mostly US-based scam by the US Secret Service back in August and has now arrested and charged four Chinese nationals — aged 27, 24, and two aged 19 for their connection to the case. The two older scammers are allegedly the crime syndicate’s “controllers”.

The scammers could face 15 years in prison, all charged with one count of dealing in proceeds of crime.

The scam saw the criminals use social engineering on sites with heavy consumer engagement, such as messaging platforms and dating sites to gain a potential victim’s trust. They then would convince them to use a legitimate investment platform for crypto or foreign exchange.

While the application that scammers sent their victims were indeed real, they had been “maliciously manipulated” to show a positive financial return when in reality, the victims were losing money.

“Refrain from investing in foreign exchange, cryptocurrency or speculative investments with people you’ve only ever encountered in the online environment,” said AFP Detective Sergeant Salam Zreika, reminding people of the dangers of being online.

If you are unsure, get a second opinion from a professional, in person.”

Daniel Croft

Daniel Croft

Born in the heart of Western Sydney, Daniel Croft is a passionate journalist with an understanding for and experience writing in the technology space. Having studied at Macquarie University, he joined Momentum Media in 2022, writing across a number of publications including Australian Aviation, Cyber Security Connect and Defence Connect. Outside of writing, Daniel has a keen interest in music, and spends his time playing in bands around Sydney.

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