Feds Seize Millions In Sports Cars In Cybercrime Ringleader Bust | #cybercrime | #infosec

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The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) announced on Wednesday that it had dismantled the 911 S5 botnet which affected millions of computers,arrested its administrator, and seized millions in sports cars.

In a coordinated international operation, YunHe Wang, 35, a People’s Republic of China national and St. Kitts and Nevis citizen-by-investment, was arrested for creating and utilizing a botnet known as 911 S5 to commit cyber attacks, large-scale fraud, child exploitation, harassment, bomb threats, and export violations.

Wang and others are alleged to have used this botnet to, according to a DOJ press release, compromise and amass a network of millions of residential Windows computers worldwide associated with more than 19 million unique IP addresses, including 613,841 IP addresses located in the United States.

“This Justice Department-led operation brought together law enforcement partners from around the globe to disrupt 911 S5, a botnet that facilitated cyber-attacks, large-scale fraud, child exploitation, harassment, bomb threats, and export violations,” said Attorney General Merrick B. Garland.

According to court documents, Wang allegedly propagated his malware through Virtual Private Network (VPN) programs, such as MaskVPN and DewVPN (torrent distribution models that he operated) and pay-per-install services that bundled his malware with other program files, including pirated versions of licensed software or copyrighted materials.

Wang then managed and controlled approximately 150 dedicated servers worldwide, approximately 76 of which he leased from U.S. based online service providers. Using the dedicated servers, Wang deployed and managed applications, commanded and controlled the infected devices, operated his 911 S5 service, and provided paying customers with access to proxied IP addresses associated with the infected devices.

“Working with our international partners, the FBI conducted a joint, sequenced cyber operation to dismantle the 911 S5 Botnet — likely the world’s largest botnet ever,” said FBI Director Christopher Wray.

“We arrested its administrator, Yunhe Wang, seized infrastructure and assets, and levied sanctions against Wang and his co-conspirators. The 911 S5 Botnet infected computers in nearly 200 countries and facilitated a whole host of computer-enabled crimes, including financial frauds, identity theft, and child exploitation.

“This operation demonstrates the FBI’s commitment to working shoulder-to-shoulder with our partners to protect American businesses and the American people, and we will work tirelessly to unmask and arrest the cybercriminals who profit from this illegal activity.”

Nicole M. Argentieri, head of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, stated, “Wang created malware that compromised millions of residential computers around the world and then sold access to the infected computers to cybercriminals. These criminals used the hijacked computers to conceal their identities and commit a host of crimes, from fraud to cyberstalking.”

Using the 911 S5 botnet, cybercriminals were able to submit 560,000 fraudulent unemployment insurance claims from compromised IP addresses, resulting in a loss of more than $5.9 billion.

It also allowed cybercriminals to purchase goods with stolen credit cards costing financial institutions in the United States millions of dollars.

YunHe Wang personally received approximately $99 million from his sales of the hijacked proxied IP addresses, which he then used to purchase 21 residential or investment properties in the United States, St. Kitts and Nevis, China, Singapore, Thailand, and the United Arab Emirates.

He also purchased dozens of assets including a 2022 Ferrari F8 Spider S-A, a BMW i8, a BMW X7 M50d, a Rolls Royce, and several luxury wristwatches – all of which were seized.

Wang was charged with conspiracy to commit computer fraud, substantive computer fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and conspiracy to commit money laundering. He now faces a maximum penalty of 65 years in prison.

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