Monday, June 24, 2024

US charges Ukrainian national over alleged role in Raccoon Infostealer malware operation

U.S. officials have charged a Ukrainian national over his alleged role in the Raccoon Infostealer malware-as-a-service operation that infected millions of computers worldwide.

Mark Sokolovsky — also known online as “raccoonstealer,” according to an indictment unsealed on Tuesday — is currently being held in the Netherlands while waiting to be extradited to the United States.

The U.S. Department of Justice accused Sokolovsky of being one of the “key administrators” of the Raccoon Infostealer, a form of Windows malware that steals passwords, credit card numbers, saved username and password combinations, and granular location data.

An example of one of the phishing emails sent by the crime group. Image Credits: U.S. Justice Department.

According to U.S. officials, the malware stole more than 50 million unique credentials and forms of identification from victims around the world since February 2019. These victims include a financial technology company based in Texas and an individual who had access to U.S. Army information systems, according to the unsealed indictment. Cybersecurity firm Group-IB said the malware may have been used to steal employee credentials during the recent Uber breach.

But the DOJ said it “does not believe it is in possession of all the data stolen by Raccoon Infostealer and continues to investigate.”

The Justice Department said it worked with European law enforcement to dismantle the IT infrastructure powering Raccoon Infostealer in March 2022, when Dutch authorities arrested Sokolovsky. According to one report, the malware operation claimed it was suspending its operations after one of its lead developers was allegedly killed during Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. A new version of Raccoon Infostealer was reportedly launched in June this year.

Recommended:  An Essential Guide to Understanding, Reporting, and Combatting Digital Threats

The FBI also announced on Tuesday that it has created a website that allows anyone to check if their data is contained in the U.S. government’s archive of information stolen by Raccoon Infostealer.

“This case highlights the importance of the international cooperation that the Department of Justice and our partners use to dismantle modern cyber threats,” said Deputy Attorney General Lisa O. Monaco. “As reflected in the number of potential victims and global breadth of this attack, cyber threats do not respect borders, which makes international cooperation all the more critical. I urge anyone who thinks they could be a victim to follow the FBI’s guidance on how to report your potential exposure.”

Sokolovsky is charged with computer fraud, wire fraud, money laundering, and identity theft and faces up to 20 years in prison if found guilty. The DOJ said Sokolovsky is appealing a September 2022 decision by the Amsterdam District Court granting his extradition to the United States.

Suggest an edit to this article

Cybersecurity Knowledge Base

Latest Cybersecurity News

Cybersecurity Academy



Stay informed of the latest Cybersecurity trends, threats and developments. Sign up for our Weekly Cybersecurity Newsletter Today.

Remember, CyberSecurity Starts With You!

  • Globally, 30,000 websites are hacked daily.
  • 64% of companies worldwide have experienced at least one form of a cyber attack.
  • There were 20M breached records in March 2021.
  • In 2020, ransomware cases grew by 150%.
  • Email is responsible for around 94% of all malware.
  • Every 39 seconds, there is a new attack somewhere on the web.
  • An average of around 24,000 malicious mobile apps are blocked daily on the internet.
Recommended:  Experian, T-Mobile US settle data spills for mere $16M
Please login
Share the word, let's increase Cybersecurity Awareness as we know it
- Sponsored -

Sponsored Offer

Unleash the Power of the Cloud: Grab $200 Credit for 60 Days on DigitalOcean!

Digital ocean free 200

Discover more infosec

User Avatar
Just your average information security researcher from Delaware US.

more infosec reads

Subscribe for weekly updates