Turkish hacker pleads guilty to global ATM heist

A Turkish man, who is alleged to have masterminded the theft of $55 million dollars, has pleaded guilty in a US Court.

34 year old Ercan Findikoglu is supposed to have leaded the scheme which withdrew money from cash machines around the world . He is accused of several charges including bank fraud and computer intrusion conspiracy for leading the hacking spree and now, faces more than 57 years in prison.

US prosecutors said hack attacks on three payment processing companies aided the widespread theft. They have called the bank heist as one of the most successful in recent times.

"By hacking into the computer networks of global financial institutions, the defendant and his co-conspirators were able to wreak havoc with the worldwide financial system by simultaneously withdrawing tens of millions of dollars,'' said US attorney Robert Capers in a statement.

Findikoglu and his gang stole customer data and used hacked credentials to change account-holders' daily withdrawal limits. They then used copied cards to withdraw money in a series of cyber attacks between 2010 and 2013.

In an attack in February 2013, the gang of withdrew more than $40 million from 3,000 cash machines in an 11-hour period.

Findikoglu used the aliases "Segate" and "Predator," was extradited in June 2015 from Germany, where he was arrested in December 2013. He will be sentenced on July 12.


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