Russian BECU Hacker Nabbed in Cyprus
An accused Russian hacker who allegedly stole thousands of credit card numbers belonging to BECU members has been arrested in Cyprus on an international warrant.
U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan of the Department of Justice office in Seattle said Dmitry Zubakha, 25, of Moscow, was taken into custody July 18 and faces extradition to the U.S. to face various computer hacking charges involving major Web companies Amazon, Priceline and eBay.
Zubakha also faces charges of possessing credit card numbers from the $10.6 billion Seattle-based credit union that were used to make fraudulent purchases.
According to the indictment, Zubakha and his co-conspirator, Sergey Logashov, allegedly mounted a denial of service attacks against Amazon, Priceline and eBay in 2008. The attacks primarily disrupted the Amazon site and the ability of customers to access the site for hours while the company attempted to deal with the attacks from a ‘botnet,’ or web of connected computer, the indictment charges.
About a year after these cyber attacks occurred, law enforcement traced the possession of more than 28,000 stolen BECU credit card numbers to Zubakha. According to the indictment, the credit card numbers were used to make fraudulent purchases outside of Washington and the U.S. The monetary value of those fraudulent purchases was not released.
If convicted on all charges, Zubakha could face up to 27 years in prison. Authorities are still searching for Logashov.
“The investigation culminating in the arrest of Zubakha by authorities in Cyprus was extremely complex,” said James Helminski, special agent in charge of the U.S. Secret Service in Seattle. “The apprehension of Zubakha is the result of a concerted effort by the Secret Service, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of Washington and the Seattle Police Department.”