U.S. court sentences a Swedish Blackshades malware maker to 57 months in prison

The United State District Judge P. Kevin Castel has sentenced one of the creators of a malware dubbed ‘Blackshades RAT’(a dangerous threat that can take over computers and steal personal and financial information), Alex Yücel to 57 months in prison.

The Swedish national has been found guilty of computer hacking on February 18, 2015 by the Judge. Along with the 57 months imprisonment, the Judge ordered him to forfeit $200,000.

According to Preet Bharara, United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Yucel created, marketed and sold software that was designed to accomplish only to gain control of a computer along with a victim's identity and other important information.

Blackshade RAT was distributed as a $40 download to thousands of online criminals since his operations began in 2010

"This malware victimized thousands of people across the globe and invaded their lives. But Yucel's computer hacking days are now over," Bharara said.

An international effort coordinating with UK National Crime Agency (NCA) shut down the Blackshades attacks in 2014.

During that time, more than 80 people were arrested in raids in the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany, the UK, Finland, Austria, Estonia, Denmark, the U.S., Canada, Chile, Croatia, Italy, Moldova and Switzerland.

Over 1,000 storage devices were confiscated, and the whole cyber criminal fraternity was warned that they are running out of hiding places.

"Criminals are finding out that committing crimes remotely offers no protection from arrest," Andy Archibald, deputy director of the NCA's National Cyber Crime Unit at the time, told V3.co.uk.


"The unique scale of this cyber operation shows what can happen when law enforcement agencies at local, national and international level work together to tackle the perpetrators and help keep people safe. Cyber crime is one of the most significant criminal threats to the UK. The NCA is helping to build the capacity of its partners across the country and co-ordinating the UK's collective efforts as part of the response," he added.
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