A Canadian is among 36 people indicted by the U.S. Justice department for their alleged roles in what has been called the Infraud Organization, an Internet-based cybercriminal enterprise broken up by international police who say it engaged in the large-scale acquisition, sale, and dissemination of stolen identities, compromised debit and credit cards, personally identifiable information, financial and banking information, computer malware, and other contraband.
Edward Lavoile, 29, who the indictment says is also known as “Eddie Lavoie,” “Skizo,” “Eddy Lavoile,” was among those named. The document doesn’t say where he currently lives.
The indictment alleges he became a member of the Infraud in July, 2011. “Although only designated a member, he has advertised for sale to fellow Infraud Organization members “fresh” CVV s [verification numbers on the back of a credit card] that he had personally hacked from Canada,” the document alleges. It also alleges that on or about January 13, 2012, Lavoile sent more than 500 compromised credit card numbers to an unindicted co-conspirator.
None of the allegations have been proven in court.
The list of those named — some of whom are only known by nicknames — includes 13 people arrested who are from the United States, Australia, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Kosovo and Serbia. The charges come after a grand jury in Las Vegas returned an indictment listing racketeering, conspiracy and other crimes.
The indictment and arrests, announced Wednesday, “mark one of the largest cyberfraud enterprise prosecutions ever undertaken by the Department of Justice,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Cronan. “As alleged in the indictment, Infraud operated like a business to facilitate cyberfraud on a global scale. Its members allegedly caused more than US$530 million in actual losses to consumers, businesses, and financial institutions alike—and it is alleged that the losses they intended to cause amounted to more than US$2.2 billion. The Department of Justice refuses to allow these cybercriminals to use the perceived anonymity of the Internet as a shield for their crimes. We are committed to working closely with our international counterparts to identify, investigate, and bring to justice the perpetrators of these crimes, wherever in the world they operate.”
A statement from the Justice department says the indictment describes the Infraud Organization as allegedly created in October 2010 by Svyatoslav Bondarenko — who it alleges is also called “Obnon,” “Rector,” or “Helkern,” 34, of Ukraine, to promote Infraud as “the premier destination for carding—purchasing retail items with counterfeit or stolen credit card information—on the Internet.” It alleges that under the slogan, “In Fraud We Trust,” the organization directed traffic and potential purchasers to the automated Web sites of its members, which served as online conduits to traffic in stolen means of identification, stolen financial and banking information, malware, and other illicit goods. It also provided an escrow service to facilitate illicit digital currency transactions among its members and employed screening protocols that purported to ensure only high quality vendors of stolen cards, personally identifiable information, and other contraband were permitted to advertise to members.
Proceeds were laundered through the use of digital currencies, including Bitcoin, the indictment alleges.
According to the indictment the organization had a hierarchy. General members typically used its websites to gather and provide information about perpetrating criminal activity; to share information with and solicit other members to engage in their criminal schemes; to use the website’s vendors to facilitate their unlawful purchases of credit card dumps, false id1mtification documents, and other contraband; and in order to have their individual disputes with other members settled by the administrator or moderators.
Members joined the Infraud Organization via an online forum, the indictment alleges. Once granted membership, they could post and pay for advertisements within the forrum. “The Infraud Organization continuously screens the wares and services of the vendors within the forum to ensure quality products. Vendors who are considered subpar are swiftly identified and punished.”