Cyberattacks and security-related incidents have become very common when it comes to US. The ratio of the cybersecurity incidents in the all over the country has revealed that hackers from Iran, North Korea and other areas of the world have been targeting American states more than ever.
On Thursday, January 16 authorities at US Department of Justice stated that they have seized the domain name of a website which allegedly sold access to billions of usernames, email IDs, passwords and other sensitive information stolen in data breaches. The officials also arrested two men for their alleged connection with this site.
The seized website
In this above picture, published by the US Department of Justice it is clearly visible that the seized domain is weleakinfo.com. In the statement, officials stated that the visitors of the not-so-subtle website "Will now find a seizure banner that notifies them that the domain name has been seized by federal authorities" that reads, "This Domain Has Been Seized."
The US Department of Justice and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) took control of the website as part of a comprehensive law enforcement action, which also includes authorities from Germany, Northern Ireland, UK and Netherlands.
This site used to portray itself as a "search engine" so that subscribers could insert over data illegally obtained from over 10,000 cybercriminals. As per the released statement, this seized website was offering access to more than 12 billion indexed records.
WeLeakInfo sold subscriptions so that any of its users could access the results of the stolen data, with subscriptions providing "Unlimited searches and access during the subscription period (one day, one week, one month, or three months)," said the authority in the statement.
The investigation on the website
It should be noted that as of now the owner of the website is unknown and the authorities have issued a public appeal for help, asking people to contact Internet Crime Complaint Center of FBI if they gave any information about the fugitive owner of the website.
The two suspects, both aged 22, were nabbed in Northern Ireland and The Netherlands on Wednesday, January 15 for their suspected involvement with the website. As per the National Crime Agency of the UK, the British authorities have been investigating the case related to Weleakinfo.com since August 2019.
In addition, the British authorities also mentioned that "The credentials are known to have been used in further cyberattacks in the UK, Germany and the US." The authorities also mentioned that the two suspects were identified during the course of the operation and as per the officials these individuals have made total profits in excess of £200,000 from the site.
Online payments tracing back to IP address believed to have been used by two suspects point them being heavily involved in the running of the website, said UK officials in the statement.
An NCA Senior Investigating Officer, Andrew Shorrock said, the website was a valuable apparatus for online criminals. In addition to that, he said, "We know that weleakinfo.com formed an extremely valuable part of a cybercriminals toolkit. This significant criminal website has now been shut down as a result of an international investigation involving law enforcement agencies from five countries."