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Operator of 'Support Center' Assisting over 2,000 Identity Thieves Pleads Guilty

Dmitry M. Naskovets of Belarus, creator and operator of, an online business that assisted over 2,000 identity thieves in over 5,000 instances of fraud—pled guilty to charges of conspiracy to commit wire and credit card fraud. Through, Naskovets helped fellow online thieves use stolen information by providing English language calling services to trick banks in the United States. Naskovets was arrested in the Czech Republic in April 2010 as part of a multinational law enforcement operation. He pled guilty this past Tuesday, February 22nd, in Manhattan federal court.

Identity Theft Support CenterIn June 2007, Naskovet, and coconspirator Sergey Semasko, also a Belarusian national, created to counteract security measures put in place by financial institutions to prevent fraud when account holders try to make transfers or withdrawals from their accounts. In exchange for a fee, the two men provided the services of English- and German-speaking individuals to persons who had stolen account and biographical information to defeat the security screening processes. Using information provided by the identity thieves over the site, the callers would confirm unauthorized withdrawals or transfers from bank accounts, unblock accounts, or change the address or phone number associated with an account, thereby giving the thieves access.

Naskovets was arrested by Czech enforcement authorities for the purpose of extradition on April 15, 2010, at the request of the United States. Also on April 15, 2010, in a joint operation, Belarusian law enforcement authorities arrested Semasko in Belarus, and Lithuanian law enforcement authorities seized the computers on which the site was hosted.

"This case was a model of international cooperation, and serves as a warning to anyone who thinks they can hide behind the anonymity of the Internet and outside the United States to commit fraud. With our partners at the FBI and our law enforcement colleagues around the world, this Office will pursue identity thieves and their co-conspirators wherever they may hide” said Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.

Naskovets, 26, faces a maximum sentence of 37 ½ years in prison, and is scheduled to be sentenced on May 26th.

Read More Cybercrime Columns in the SecurityWeek Cybercrime Section

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