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Police catch Brazilian phisherman

Antony Savvas

Police in Brazil have arrested a man suspected of being the leader of a phishing gang, which is alleged to have stolen up to £20m from online bank accounts.

It is claimed that the gang, which is said to have included more than 18 people, stole from online banking customers using a Trojan horse virus sent to millions of computers via e-mail.

The Trojan is believed to have contained key-logging software that sent banking details such as user names and passwords back to the gang, enabling them to access online accounts, mainly in Brazil, but some outside the country.

"This is the latest arrest of phishers in Brazil - last year, more than 50 arrests were made and in February, a gang of four were arrested. It's great that the Brazilian authorities are stamping down on internet fraudsters," said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at security solutions provider Sophos.

"Most computer users are aware of the threat from phishing e-mails that direct online bank users to fake websites, but some are still unaware of the threat from Trojans."


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