Because of the vastness of the Internet, cyber crimes such as credit card fraud and identity theft can be committed from anywhere in the world. For quite some time, the FBI has seen an increase in these activities in Eastern Europe.
Though the hackers are young, they seldom work alone. In fact, Eastern European cyber crime rings are organized crime hierarchies, and the FBI is trying to tackle them, said Darren J. Mott, supervisory special agent with the bureau’s Cyber Division in Washington, D.C.
“Imagine the Cosa Nostra, with the big guys at the top and a bunch of little guys working under them; it’s just like that,” Mott said.
The FBI is taking a holistic approach to try and dismantle this burgeoning world, Mott said at a panel on Eastern European Organized Cyber Crime.
With special agents working in legal attaché offices in Russia, Romania and Estonia, Mott said the agency has established, and continues to strengthen, a working relationship with many Eastern European entities.
“We’re trying to get that cop-to-cop communication because with all cyber crimes, the information is time sensitive,” he said. “We can’t just expect to call and get or share information at a moment’s notice unless a relationship is established.”