A New York City man Vitalii Antonenko, 28, was charged for hacking, credit card trafficking, and money laundering.
Antonenko was arrested in March 2019 and detained for money laundering charges after he returned from Ukraine with computers and other digital goods that hold thousands of stolen payment card numbers.
Antonenko and co-conspirators used the SQL injection attack method to steal credit card data from vulnerable networks and extracted Payment Card Data and other personally identifiable information (PII).
Then they transfer the stolen data for sale on online darknet marketplaces that are used to exchange various illicit goods.
Law enforcement agencies tracked the activity for more than two years purchasing personally identifiable information and stolen payment card numbers paying in bitcoin for American Express and Mastercard numbers.
The agents tracked the bitcoin transaction through the blockchain, that has more than 19,000 address controlled by the hacker group.
Antonenko and co-conspirator sold the data to others and used Bitcoin, as well as cash to disguise their nature, location, source, ownership, and control.
Cybercriminals use cryptocurrency to avoid government scrutiny and law enforcement. The anonymous nature of the cryptocurrencies makes them more attractive.
Antonenko may face up to 25 years in prison and fine up to $750,000 for money laundering conspiracy. “Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based on the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.”
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