The US Department of Justice today said it has arrested 74 individuals engaged in business email compromise (BEC) schemes, with approximately $14 million in fraudulent wire transfers recovered.
The so-called Operation Wire Wire that netted the suspects was a coordinated law enforcement effort by the DoJ, US Department of Homeland Security, US Department of the Treasury, and US Postal Inspection Service, along with law enforcement agencies from Nigeria, Poland, Canada, Mauritius, Indonesia, and Malaysia. Wire transfers are still commonly used to move money around the globe, and BEC attacks try to hijack those transfers and steal the money in motion.
Among the 74 arrests, 42 came in the US, 29 in Nigeria, and three each in Canada, Mauritius, and Poland.
Since the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) began keeping track of BEC and its variant, email account compromise (EAC), as a complaint category, there has been a loss of over $3.7 billion reported to the IC3.
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