New UK Cyber Cops See First Success: £750k Phisher Sentenced

laptop, police security handcurrs (c) Nata-Lia shutterstock

Scammer gets five years as National Cyber Crime Agency celebrates success just days after its official launch

The National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU) has seen its first major victory with the sentencing of an Internet scammer who tried to bag more than £750,000 by defrauding banks and their customers.

Olukunle Babatunde, a 27-year-old from Croydon, was given five years and six months by a judge at Inner London Crown Court, having pleaded guilty to the phisher charges.

Phishing - Shutterstock - © Ivelin RadkovPhisher snared

The phisher sentencing came following an NCCU investigation into the distribution of stolen banking data, which was acquired by phishing emails designed to trick users into handing over their login information.

The NCCU was only formally launched on Monday, but it has been operating since early this year while the cyber team of the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) and the Met’s Police Central e-Crime Unit (PCeU) were gradually merged.

“This is an excellent result built on the joint working of precursor agencies and has involved the examination of a large number of data, resulting in 765 victim accounts being identified,” said Andy Archibald, head of the NCCU.

“The National Crime Agency will continue to share information and intelligence with regards to serious and organised cyber crime, ensuring those who pose a threat to the public are identified and held accountable for their actions.”

Earlier today, Archibald told TechWeek the NCCU still needed serious skilling up if it is to tackle future cyber threats.  He said 80 percent of those staff working for PCeU have moved over, which is positive, yet it needs more “non-traditional” skills.

In particular, he wants better de-anonymisation tools to tackle crooks who use anonymising services like Tor.

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