Australia Stops Criminals from Stealing Over $17M from Pension Funds
Australian authorities say they prevented cyber criminals from stealing over US$17 million from the country’s pension funds and launched a series of actions to stop further offshore money transfers, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) reported on Monday.
Minister for Home Affairs, Karen Andrew, announced the same day a new joint action against cybercrime that will start in March 2022.
“This AFP-led cybercrime centre will be cutting edge, and will ensure Australia is leading the world on cyber security,” Andrew said. “Australians work hard for their money and the AFP is working tirelessly to prevent cyber criminals from scamming, stealing, and defrauding them.”
Previously, the AFP identified with the help of a foreign enforcement agency a criminal marketplace connected to the online sale of cybercrime software. Officers found more than 500,000 compromised online credentials and identified both victims and offenders.
In 2020, AFP’s operation Dolos saved over $6 million from being stolen by cyber criminals from pension funds.
In one case, a Canberra woman was tricked into transfering over $900.000 to a criminally-controlled bank account while buying property.
Similarly, an elderly woman transferred over $350.000 to a criminal account after a cyber criminal who pretended to be her solicitor told the woman to do so. Police managed to retrieve more than 80% of the women’s money.
The same year, AFP identified 27,000 potential victims and charged eight offenders with 21 offences, completing 163 disruption activities.
“The AFP, with our partners, are disrupting highly-sophisticated criminal syndicates both onshore and offshore,’’Assistant Commissioner, Justine Gough, said, adding that police have investigated “a large range of cybercrime methods with business email compromise, intrusion against industry/government and malware at the top of the list.”