Use of Internet for Money Laundering
The accounts of individuals suspected to have links with individuals running an international cyber-crime racket were reported. Moreover, upon further investigation, one of the culprits was also listed with Interpol. The suspects were involved in cybercrime and earned revenue by generating traffic on various Premium Rate Services (PRS). The suspects used a complex method to defraud the telecom service providers. The suspects hacked into a vulnerable enterprise’s PBX (telephone system) and placed multiple calls to his own PRS numbers. The hacked enterprises were technically responsible for paying the fraudulent charges but in reality they rarely paid for them. The enterprise service provider then routed the call to the provided premium rate numbers and got the call terminated by a hosted IVR system. The service provider was supposedly paying the premium rate number provider extra fee that it would be receiving from the hacked enterprises, who would then be sharing a portion of the revenue from the calls with the number’s owner. The financial intelligence was referred to LEA for further investigation.