The suspects revealed that they had purchased stolen credit card information on dark web markets which they encoded to commit fraud.
BillyReport 16 Oct 2019 1
Three individuals suspected of credit card fraud have been apprehended by local Police in Norfolk.
Reports indicate that the arrest was made after a storemanager at Norfolk Premium Outlets alerted law enforcement about suspicious activity which prompted the arrest in the parking lot of the institution.
Police have said that in the course of their investigations, they conducted a search on the suspects and found on their person several credit cards as well as personal computers and other electronics in their Mercedes vehicle.
Upon interrogation, one of the suspects is reported to have admitted guilt to law enforcement, confessing to illegally buying stolen credit card data online via a darknet marketplace at a cost of $20 USD in cryptocurrency. The suspect and his cohorts, identified as Jermaine Alexander, Xavier Knowles and David Littles are also alleged to have operated a magnetic strip reader to put the credit cards into code and later used that data to shop for items online running into estimatedhundreds of dollars.
An academic from the Virginia Beach Campus Tidewater Community College, Kimberly Perez of the IT Department, and Professor of Information Systems Technology and Cyber Security CS, shed some light on this recent criminal activity, stating,
The Dark Web was originally developed by the government for spies to share secret information. The Dark Web is an encrypted network that is not indexed by traditional search engines and cannot be seen without passwords and access. It includes a plethora of illegal and illicit items for sale. The Dark Web is accessible by utilizing special software called the TOR browser,
going on to caution that,
People can use complex passwords, change them often, check their credit card statements and bank accounts regularly for any unauthorized activity, and be cautious of any email scams by not clicking on anything that you do not recognize or that looks suspicious. Ransomware is one of the biggest threats today and one additional way to thwart this attack is to make sure you regularly update the software on your computer and backup all your important files (like photos) on to an external drive for quick recovery.
The arrested suspects are still detained in police custody in Norfolk pending a thorough investigation by law enforcement.
Norfolk, as well as other parts of the country have seen a recent upsurge in cybercrime in the last four years, mostly centred around credit card fraud and other infractions, it stands to reason that citizens as well as residents of the area heed the caution of Professor Perez to protect themselves, property and data from these cyber criminals.