4 Vietnamese accused of cyberattacks in US, causing $71M in damages

By Minh Nga   June 24, 2024 | 12:23 am PT
Four Vietnamese hackers have been accused of involvement in a series of computer intrusions and identity thefts, causing American companies over US$71 million in damages.

According to a statement by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of New Jersey released over the weekend, the four individuals, Tai Van Tai, Nguyen Viet Quoc, Nguyen Trang Xuyen, and Nguyen Van Truong, are identified as members of an international cybercrime group known as FIN9.

From May 2018 through October 2021, the four hacked the computer networks of victim companies throughout the U.S. and used their access to steal or attempt to steal non-public information, employee benefits, and funds.

The defendants caused their victims to suffer more than $71 million in losses.

"The FIN9 defendants were prolific international hackers who, for years, allegedly used phishing campaigns, supply chain attacks and other hacking methods to steal millions from their victims. They did all of this while hiding behind keyboards, VPNs, and fake identities, and even then, the Department of Justice found them," said Attorney Philip R. Seller.

According to the indictment announced at the court, the four Vietnamese nationals, Tai, Quoc, Xuyen, and Truong are facing multiple charges related to their involvement in unauthorized access to computer networks.

They employed phishing campaigns and supply chain attacks to infiltrate the networks, stealing non-public information, employee benefits, and funds.

The defendants accessed and redirected digital employee benefits like gift cards to their own accounts and also stole gift card information from the victims' networks.

Furthermore, they stole personally identifiable information and credit card details from employees and customers, using this information to create accounts on cryptocurrency exchanges and server hosting companies under stolen identities to conceal their own.

Then, they sold the stolen gift cards through a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency marketplace under a fake name to hide the source of the stolen money.

All four individuals are charged with conspiracy to commit fraud, extortion, and related computer activities, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and intentional damage to protected computers.

Tai, Xuyen, and Truong also face charges of conspiracy to commit money laundering.

Additionally, Tai and Quoc are charged with aggravated identity theft and conspiracy to commit identity fraud. If convicted, they face substantial prison sentences, with penalties ranging from two years for identity theft to up to 20 years for wire fraud and money laundering conspiracy.

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