European cops bust ATM skimming, card-fraud crew

Four key members of an international criminal network responsible for ATM skimming, card counterfeiting and payment fraud were arrested Nov. 30, during a joint law enforcement action.

Operation Neptune was run by the Italian Carabinieri in cooperation with the Bulgarian General Directorate of Combating Organized Crime and the National Police of the Czech Republic, with support from the European Cybercrime Center of Europol.

According to a Europol press release, the leaders of the transnational criminal group actively supervised all stages of their criminal enterprise, including the placement of skimming equipment on ATMs in the central areas of European cities, the production counterfeit credit cards, and the subsequent cash-out of ATMs in in non-European countries that included Belize, Indonesia and Jamaica, among others.

Dozens of ATMs were identified as having been tampered with, and more than 1,000 counterfeit credit cards were seized in law enforcement raids, as well as evidence of fraudulent international transactions worth more than 50,000 euros were collected.

The investigation, which began at the end of 2015, received EC3 forensic and analytical support from the very beginning, the release said.

Topics: Security, Skimming / Fraud

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