Grant West, a 26-year old computer hacker from Kent (United Kingdom), was described as a “one man cybercrime wave” for having stolen the personal data of approximately 165,000 people via “phishing” scheme. The prosecution affirmed that he profited over £180,000 (about $240,000) from the scam and converted the proceeds into Bitcoin, which would then be kept in multiple accounts.
West is supposed to send emails looking like to be from Just Eat, an online food order and delivery service, to extract credit and debit card details from his victims. He was adjudged to more than 10 years in prison after accepting the charges, which included conspiracy to commit fraud, computer misuse, and drug offences. Judge Michael Gledhill presided over the trial.
Masquerading as Just Eat, Grant West suggested a voucher in recovery for answering questions between July 2015 and December 2015. The phishing scam cost the firm over £200,000 (approximately $267,000), but there is no evidence their servers were hacked by West. Other high profile hack victims include British Airways, Barclays, Sainsbury’s, Asda, Uber, Argos, Coral.
The Police seized £25,000 (about $33,000) in cash and £500,000 (about $666,000) in Bitcoin. Judge Michael Gledhill declared £1.6 million (approximately $2.3 million) worth of cryptocurrency is not accounted for.
When such inadequate security is confronted with a criminal of your skills and ambition it is totally unfit for purpose and worthless. This case should be a wake-up call to customers, companies and the computer industry to the very real threat of cybercrime.
The hacker once had a number of client`s details, he would then sell them on Alpha Bay, an online dark web market 10-times larger than Silk Road which was taken down by the officials in July 2017.