Police in Spain have arrested four people in connection with a series of online crimes including malware writing, data theft and credit card fraud.
Two seventeen year-olds were arrested yesterday in Alicante, charged with creating a Trojan horse which allowed them to remotely take control of webcams within local educational institutions.
This enabled the duo to spy on students and record compromising images, which they then used to blackmail the victims into giving them money.
Later in the same day, two adults were arrested in Madrid, in connection with the original inquiry.
It is alleged that the adults used the teenage malware authors to obtain confidential data in order to commit credit card fraud.
Using fake credit card details, the two adults allegedly made purchases amounting to more than 60,000 euros (£41,600).
Carole Theriault, senior security consultant at internet security software firm Sophos, said, "The two individuals charged with creating the Trojan may be minors, but this is no schoolboy prank.
“These criminals were in it for the money, and were prepared to blackmail and steal from their peers, as well as selling on personal information so that other wrongdoers could get in on the act,” she said.
In February 2005, a Spanish male computer student was fined for spying on a young woman via her webcam, as well as monitoring her online conversations and e-mail communications.
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