Headline May 07, 2016/ ''' *CYBER-CRIMES* : { MONEY-CIRCUIT } '''



HOW A REMOTE TOWN in Romania became the epicentre of Digital Scams, is a pure nightmare of wonders. And...

Yudhigit Bhatacharjee from Wired, illuminates the pure mastery of research as he goes on to address : *The City That Crime Built*. And so the story continues.

*Money transfer centres are where the business of digital fraud gets done*.  
Over the past few years, Stoica and Frunza have tapped their own social networks  to identify suspects and keep tab on them.

It's not uncommon for the two to find themselves investigating a childhood acquaintance or, conversely, to run into known criminals in social situations.

Frunza plays on the same soccer team as a suspect who is under surveillance. Stoica and Frunza both complain they're fighting an unstoppable tide with limited resources. But they haven't been entirely unsuccessful.

In fact, the 2008 case that first revealed the anatomy of  Ramnicu Valcea's fraud networks stemmed from Stoica's investigation of a young entrepreneur named Romeo Chita.

Chita started out as an arrow in the united kingdom, and he was good. he moved up the ranks and eventually hired a few friends to start his own fraud ring.

The Romanian authorities started looking into him in 2005, when he began flashing his cash and buying a new car every few months without any obvious source of income, says Stoica.

The next year, Chita launched an Internet Service Provider called NetOne. it was both  a money laundering operation and a a way to shield fraudulent activity from investigators, authorities say.

In January 2008, an informer gave Stoica the mobile numbers of two men suspected to be working for Chita. The police tapped the phones, and the next day, one of the men sent-

Chita a text message with money control transfer numbers -unique sequence of digits that the receiver of any wire transfer must provide to pick up cash.

Stoica and his team followed up with surveillance of Chita and the associates, establishing what Stoica calls  ''the money circuit,''  the route through which the money flowed from victims in the United States to Chita and others.

The group turned out to be a little more sophisticated than the usual Ramnicu scammers. 

They worked a con known as  *spear fishing*  -sending US companies, for example, e-mails that spoofed messages from the Inland Revenue Service, the  department of Justice, or another agency. Leaving behind a Trojan horse  computer virus-

Chita's group would then obtain  the companys'  bank account numbers and passwords.  

*They allegedly hired homeless people in  Las Vegas  to open fake corporate accounts that could receive the stolen money*.

The same month that  Stoica  began pursuing Chita,   -a police officer stopped a car for speeding in the  Westlake suburb of Cleveland, Ohio. As he was about to write up the ticket, the cop happened to glance in the back, where he saw-

*A half dozen mobile phones, two computers, several passports, and two dozen receipts for money transfers. He arrested the two young men in the car, who turned out to be Romanians; they were also carrying $63,000*.

The two men eventually confessed to being arrows for Chita. They had spent most of that winter driving around the Midwest, picking up money from various Western Union and MoneyGram locations.

Their confessions led to more wiretaps and surveillance in the United States and Romania, uncovering a network of two dozen accomplices.

That summer, Romanian authorities and  FBI agents conducted a series of raids on both sides of the Atlantic to mop up the gang. 

Chita spent 14 months in prison before he was granted a provisional release, pending the completion of trial. He is still free, at the time of researching of this work-

But his photo remains at the top spot on an organizational chart filed in Stoica's office.

Against the wishes of the two cops, I went looking for this kingpin, states the author. 

It was a small city, as Stoica said.

The Honour and Serving of the  ''Cybercrime Operational Research'' continues. Thank You all for reading and sharing forward.

With respectful dedication to the Students, Professors and Teachers of the world. See Ya all on !WOW!  -the World Students Society and the Ecosystem 2011:

''' Cyber Feast '''

Good Night and God Bless

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


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