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Spain Captures Alleged Mastermind of $1.2 Billion Bank Hacks

(illustrative photo)
(illustrative photo)

Europe's law enforcement agency says Spanish police have arrested the alleged mastermind of a cybercrime syndicate that stole more than 1 billion euros ($1.24 billion) from banks over more than four years.

Europol said on March 26 that the alleged gang leader was arrested in the coastal city of Alicante, without giving the person's name or nationality.

The gang used pieces of malware known as Carbanak and Cobalt to target more than 100 banks in more than 40 countries since late 2013, a statement said.

It said the gang sent e-mails with a malicious attachment to bank workers. The software gave the cybercriminals remote control of infected machines, providing them with access to the internal banking network and infecting servers controlling ATMs.

Europol said the investigation was conducted by the Spanish National Police with the support of Europol, the FBI, Romanian, Belarusian, and Taiwanese authorities, as well as private cybersecurity companies.

With reporting by AP