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Major darknet marketplace Genesis dismantled

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Genesis market taken offline

Genesis Marketplace, one of the largest ‘darknet’ marketplaces in recent years has been taken offline, and its key management placed under arrest. The National Crime Agency, in collaboration with the City of London Police, issued 31 arrest warrants and at-least 24 people across the UK have been taken into custody.

Authorities in 17 countries moved to dismantle Genesis Market in an international operation codenamed ‘Cookie Monster’, spearhead by the FBI and Dutch National Police. Genesis was an enabler of almost all forms of technological crime, but it was primarily a hotbed for fraudulent practices.

It is said that the market held 80 million banking-related credentials and digital fingerprints.

Genesis Market taken offlice
The homepage of Genesis Market //PA

There were 120 arrests worldwide and over 200 searches. The NCA said ‘preventative action’ will continue to be rolled out, where users identified to have been regular users of the service will be ‘warned about their potentially criminal activity’.

Rob Jones, NCA Director General NECC and Threat Leadership, said: “Behind every cyber criminal or fraudster is the technical infrastructure that provides them with the tools to execute their attacks and the means to benefit financially from their offending.

Genesis Market was a prime example of such a service and was one of the most significant platforms on the criminal market. Its removal will be a huge blow to criminals across the globe.

Targeting this infrastructure is at the core of the NCA’s efforts to disrupt the highest harm offenders and protect the public from those seeking to infiltrate their lives, stealing their identities and their money.”

Ordinary citizens but also major companies were targeted by Genesis. One method they employed was ‘bots’ that harvested and retained real-time information from victims’ devices.

With malicious attacks these devices would become infected, and give these bots all data pertaining to their identity, such as cookies, saved logins, and autofill form data.

To check if you have been a victim, you can use https://www.politie.nl/checkyourhack

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