Singapore Phishing Mules

Thursday, April 12, 2007

The already illustrious information security dictionary just keeps expanding!  I think instead of “Phishing Mules”,  a catchier expression might be “Dumbasses”.  The article does not mention the possible number of “lashes” these dumbasses may get.

Sophos, a world leader in IT security and control, has reminded computer users to be wary of online criminals recruiting people under the guise of money-making opportunities, which in reality are helping phishers move stolen money into overseas accounts.  The warning comes following news that authorities in Singapore are investigating a group of suspected “money mules” who are said to have laundered money for an international crime syndicate to accounts in Russia and Latvia.  According to the Commercial Affairs Department those being questioned applied last year to be transaction managers earning commission for what was claimed to be an international aid agency.  It is alleged that the syndicate’s money was sent from Australia to Singapore in batches of 5,000 Singapore dollars through firms such as Western Union.  The transaction managers based in Singapore are then said to have forwarded funds to accounts in Russia and Latvia, earning 1,000 Singapore dollars a week in commission.  “It may take time for the police in Singapore to get to the bottom of this particular case, but what is clear is that criminal gangs are interested in hiring people to help them move money around the world,” said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos.  “Innocent internet users should be on their guard not to get mixed up with what they may think is an innocent business proposition, but actually turns out to be helping phishers steal money from online bank accounts.”  If convicted money launderers can receive a maximum fine of 200,000 Singapore dollars (US $131,578) and seven years in jail.

Reference :

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