From Black Baron to Shadowcrew

Last week, six people linked to the ‘Shadowcrew’ web site pleaded guilty in New Jersey to conspiracy to defraud – Shadowcrew members have allegedly trafficked at least 1.7 million stolen credit card numbers, causing losses of more than $4 million.

Last week was also the 9th anniversary of the conviction of Christopher Pile (aka ‘The Black Baron’). He was sentenced to 18 months in prison for distributing the SMEG.Pathogen and SMEG.Queeg viruses.

How things have changed! It’s clear that the nature of the threat has changed, from isolated acts of ‘computer vandalism’ to cyber crime. And the Shadowcrew case clearly shows that law enforcement has changed too. The long arm of the law now reaches further than ever, with agencies around the world focusing on combating cyber crime. Hardly a week goes by without the arrest or conviction of hackers, spammers or virus writers.

The stakes are higher than ever before. Although cyber criminals can make big money, they’re also risking larger fines and higher sentences when caught.

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