Interpol arrests 2000 criminals launching social engineering attacks

In what appears as an operation first of its kind, Interpol has arrested over 2000 criminals who launched social engineering attacks worldwide. The operation to nab thousands of cyber criminals at a time was named ‘ First Light 2022’ and was performed with the coordination of police forces from about 76 countries.

Social engineering attacks are crimes that involve business email compromise, job scams, X-rated scams using beautiful faces of women, mainly models, telephone scams, money laundering, and identity theft.

Usually, in such scams, cybercriminals manipulate victims in the disguise of company employees or individuals. But in reality, they pose as others and perform acts in such a way that the victim reveals sensitive info, such as bank account details or e-wallet information disclosure.

Coming to the First Light 2022, the operation of nab criminals took place at 1770 locations on a worldwide note, and over 3000 suspects were identified. But only 2K of them were taken into custody with valid evidence and over 4,300 bank accounts related to them were frozen and $50 million world USD was intercepted or seized.

As the IT working community followed a strict Work From Home(WFH) culture, there has been a rise in the number of internet scams. This is where a notable rise in internet scams was observed when people were being trapped with lucrative job offers that instead turned into forced labor, flesh trade, and captivity in casinos or transport containers.

Cyber crooks witnessed a rise in opportunities from WFH culture as they launched innovative cyber scams that led to a rise in social engineering attacks in novel forms.

Interpol’s First Light 2022 project took shape in September 2021 and analyzed various scams and track them accordingly. In February this year, they shared their analysis and nabbing plan with the law enforcement authorities of about 82 countries and launched the program to nab cyber criminals.

As the operation was well coordinated, Interpol nabbed 60% of the criminals taking part in social engineering attacks.

More details about the scam will be updated shortly!


Naveen Goud
Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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