Security Experts:

Ransomware Group That Targeted Over 50 Companies Dismantled in Ukraine

Ukrainian authorities on Thursday announced arresting several individuals who are allegedly members of a major cybercrime group.

According to the Security Service of Ukraine and the country’s Cyber Police, the arrests are the result of an operation conducted in cooperation with law enforcement agencies in the United Kingdom and the United States.

The suspects allegedly carried out ransomware attacks against more than 50 companies in the United States and Europe, and they made over $1 million by encrypting their files and asking for a ransom.

The ransomware, which has not been named, was delivered using spam emails.

The group’s leader is believed to be a 36-year-old man from Kiev. His wife and three acquaintances are also accused of taking part in the operation.

Authorities say the gang not only launched ransomware attacks, but also provided VPN services to other cybercriminals.

In addition, one of the suspects is wanted in the UK for using malware to steal payment card data. The fraudster allegedly used the stolen cards to make illegal online purchases, and then resold the acquired items for a profit.

Ukrainian authorities announced arrests related to several ransomware gangs in the past year.

Related: Ukraine Police Seize Cash in Raids on Major Ransomware Gang

Related: 12 People Arrested Over Ransomware Attacks on Critical Infrastructure

Related: Two 'Prolific' Ransomware Operators Arrested in Ukraine

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Eduard Kovacs (@EduardKovacs) is a contributing editor at SecurityWeek. He worked as a high school IT teacher for two years before starting a career in journalism as Softpedia’s security news reporter. Eduard holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial informatics and a master’s degree in computer techniques applied in electrical engineering.