Using a combination of phishing and hijacking handphone numbers, a syndicate siphoned out about a quarter million ringgit from some online banking accounts over the past nine months. Police learnt just how elaborate the syndicate’s modus operandi was only after crippling the gang of cyber crooks with the arrest of six people in a raid on Friday.
The suspects aged between 20 and 27 comprised a Sierra Leone national said to be the mastermind, a male Jordanian and a male Pakistani, and four Malaysians, two of whom were women.
They were nabbed when a federal commercial crimes investigations department CCID team led by cyber crimes and multimedia head ACP Kamaruddin Md Din raided the apartment at the Millenium Square at Section 14, Petaling Jaya where police also seized computers, fake MyKad and bank cards.
Police learnt that the suspected mastermind had come to Malaysia in 2005 as a student and graduated with a degree in information technology from a well known college in Petaling Jaya last year while Jordanian was registered as a civil engineering student of a local college since 2008. The Pakistani was here on a social visit visa.
Investigations revealed that the syndicate members had managed to retrieve personal particulars including the usernames, passwords from an online banking kiosk at a bank in Petaling Jaya and even obtained the transaction authorisation code (TAC) which is sent out by the bank to the registered handphones of online banking users to execute cash transfers from their victims’ accounts.