Scam of the day – February 25, 2014 – Aleksi Kolarov convicted of identity theft

Although the name of Bulgarian Aleksi Kolarov is probably not familiar to you, it probably should be.  Last Friday, he was convicted of identity theft in federal court in New Jersey.  For years, Kolarov was one of the leaders and operators of the website Shadowcrew.com, a black market website where stolen credit cards, debit cards and bank account information were sold to the approximately 4,000 members of the criminal website.  It has been estimated that Shadowcrew was responsible for the theft of 1.5 million credit cards, debit cards and bank account numbers resulting in fraud losses totaling millions of dollars to the banks issuing the cards and where the accounts were located.  Sentencing is scheduled for May 28th.

TIPS

One of the best things to come out of this case was the international cooperation of law enforcement agencies that it took to bring Kolarov to justice.  Too often today, particular in Russia and China, law enforcement agencies do not cooperate with efforts to arrest international criminals such as Kolarov.  Black market websites still are used to sell stolen credit cards and debit cards.  The credit cards and debit cards stolen in the Target data breach have been available for criminals to purchase on line since December and now as most of those credit and debit cards have been cancelled by the victims, the price of the remaining credit cards and debit cards involved in the data breach that remain unsold has dropped by more than 70% according to Brian Krebs of Krebs Security.  If your credit card or debit card was compromised in the breach and you have still not cancelled the card, you should do so immediately.