A global hacker forum that authorities said served as a bazaar where Internet thieves could buy, sell and trade stolen data from millions of people worldwide was dismantled Wednesday by investigators from the U.S. Justice Department and 19 other countries, officials said.
Darkode, a password-protected forum where users could buy and sell stolen credit card information and the malware used to infiltrate personal computers, was considered "one of the gravest threats to the integrity of data on computers in the United States and around the world," federal investigators said.
"Hackers and those who profit from stolen information use underground Internet forums to evade law enforcement and target innocent people around the world," Asst. U.S. Atty. Gen. Leslie Caldwell said in a statement. "This operation is a great example of what international law enforcement can accomplish when we work closely together to neutralize a global cybercrime marketplace."
At least 70 members of Darkode were either charged, arrested or had their homes searched on Wednesday, the Justice Department said. Among those arrested was Johan Anders Gudmunds, the Sweden-based administrator of Darkode.
Gudmunds, 27, who went by the online handle "Synthet!c," used his network to steal data from computer users on about 200 million separate occasions, investigators said.
One guy, responsible for 200 million hacks.
They are going to flip this guy and still lock him up and throw away the key.