The Guardia di Finanza, Milan, neutralized a dangerous computer virus that defrauded users of 104,000 Euro
Computer Crime Analyst,
Inspector of Guardia di Finanza in Italy
Dr. Gerardo Costabile
Date: November 07, 2003
The author of a dangerous and unknown worm (Marque) was discovered and neutralized by Guardia di Finanza (Italian Economic Police). The worm used the popularity of a famous Italian TV show called Zelig to fraudulently alter the telephone connection of thousand of users.
The police operation, distinguished by effective international cooperation with the United States Secret Service, lead to the arrest of a man, living between Venezuela and Italy. He was charged with spreading a virus and for IT fraud over 100,000 Euro in 3 days. The money obtained by the fraud was to be transferred first to New York and then to Aruba.
The danger of this virus is due to the fact it merges, for the first time in the world in a single computer program, of two of the most dangerous things in internet an unknown virus of the worm family and a dialer.
The Italian cybercops of Guardia di Finanza, who stopped the author of this worm, are the same ones who also investigated the famous Vierika virus which is considered to be the first Italian malware. They have also been working with the United States Secret Service in Milan, since 2002, to investigate a complex series of attacks, initiated by two Italian cracker groups, against Nasa, U.S. Army and Navy. This attack compromised over 1,000 university and research institute computers worldwide.
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