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Accused Estonian Fraudster Extradited To The US Appears In Federal Court

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Accused Estonian Fraudster Extradited To The US Appears In Federal Court

Postby sunnyd » Sat Apr 21, 2012 6:42 am

Story :

An Estonian man has been extradited to New York to face charges he was part of a hacking gang that infected more than 4 million computers with malware as part of a massive click-fraud scheme.

Anton Ivanov is one of seven Estonian and Russian men charged in November with operating an international conspiracy that generated $14 million in phony revenue. He arrived in New York on Thursday afternoon and appeared in federal court in Manhattan for an arraignment hearing. Five other men charged in the operation are still being held in Estonia. One man accused of participating in the fraud ring remains at large.

The US Department of Justice accused the seven men of orchestrating a far-reaching botnet scam that infected both Windows and Mac computers with malware that replaced the IP addresses of legitimate sites with those controlled by the attackers. DNS Changer, as the malware was dubbed by researchers, caused compromised machines to rely on rogue DNS servers that caused victims to view websites they never would have seen on uninfected systems. The malware also prevented them from reaching antimalware sites, making it hard for them to disinfect their machines.

The scam, which Ars covered in-depth in November, hijacked user machines when they visited booby-trapped websites or downloaded tainted software to view videos. Once on user systems, DNS Changer caused them to visit fraudulent websites that displayed ads brokered by the operators, prosecutors said.

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