Nigerian Police Arrest 11 Individuals in BEC Crackdown

More than 50,000 targets around the world have been affected by the business email compromise scams, Interpol reports.

Police in Nigeria, with the help of Interpol, have arrested 11 individuals in the country for their alleged involvement in business email compromise (BEC) scams associated with more than 50,000 targets worldwide.

Six of those arrested were identified as members of SilverTerrier, a known BEC gang that is thought to have harmed thousands of companies globally and has successfully evaded prosecution for more than five years.

A laptop belonging to one of the 11 alleged BEC operatives contained some 800,000 user names and credentials belonging to potential victim organizations. Another arrested individual was found to have been monitoring conversations between 16 companies and their customers, as well as attempting to divert money to SilverTerrier accounts when transactions between them were about to be made, Interpol said Wednesday.

The arrests happened in December and marked the culmination of a 10-day operation called Operation Falcon II, in which the Nigerian Police Force (NPF) used information supplied by Interpol to apprehend suspects in the cities of Lagos and Asaba. As part of the operation, the NPF worked with law enforcement authorities in several countries that were actively investigating BEC activity in Nigeria. Also contributing to the effort were Palo Alto Networks’ Unit 42 and Group-IB’s APAC Cyber Investigations Team.

“Operation Falcon II sends a clear message that cybercrime will have serious repercussions for those involved in business email compromise fraud,” stated Craig Jones, Interpol’s director of cybercrime. “INTERPOL is closing ranks on gangs like ‘SilverTerrier’; as investigations continue to unfold, we are building a very clear picture of how such groups function and corrupt for financial gain.” Read more:

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