One of the three operators of the WeLeakInfo website, which sold everyone access to various data leaks, sentenced in the Netherlands to two years in prison, although he will serve a second year on probation.
During a court hearing earlier this year, the suspect (a 23-year-old man whose name has not been released) admitted to running the service with a Northern Irishman and a third unidentified person who is still at large.
The three ran a service that sold access to data for over 12.5 billion accounts collected from 10,000 different leaks. In fact, for a fee, the site provided access to people’s passwords in clear text. At the same time, the access itself cost only $ 2 per day ($ 7 per week or $ 24 per month).
While the site tried to disguise itself as a legitimate service (like Have I Been Pwned), in fact it was heavily advertised on hacker forms as a resource to find old people’s credentials. This information could then be used to try to hack different profiles of the victim, in the hope that she was reusing the same passwords.
A 23-year-old Dutchman told investigators that he did not create the site, but only joined the WeLeakInfo team in early 2016, when the resource was already working. The alleged suspect from Northern Ireland wrote the site itself, while a third unknown laundered payments from customers. The convict, however, “was mainly engaged in data processing, and also answered questions to the support service.”
He says that he processed the compromised databases and uploaded them to the WeLeakInfo servers. Moreover, most of the data was provided to the resource “in the form of donations.” That is, the scheme under which users were given free access to the service if they provided WeLeakInfo with a new database worked fine.
Let me remind you that at the beginning of 2020, the WeLeakInfo.com domain was seized, and this was the result of a joint operation by the FBI, as well as law enforcement officers from Northern Ireland, the Netherlands, Germany and the UK. After the seizure of the domain in the Netherlands and Northern Ireland, two men who ran the resource were arrested.
As it became known now, thanks to court documents, a few days before the arrest, the admins exchanged messages on WhatsApp and discussed receiving a court request from the FBI. Based on the logs, the two suspects believed they were safe, since the authorities did not send requests to underground marketplaces, and as a result, WeLeakInfo operators believed that the FBI considered them “legitimate.”
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