Criminologists from Salzburg have succeeded in investigating an 18-year-old in India as a suspected hacker or Internet fraudster. The suspect in Calcutta is said to have brought two Salzburg residents around 50,000 euros in the spring of 2021.
For years, fraudsters have been causing damage to PC users, without harming them pretending to be Microsoft support staff. They are trying to gain access to their victim’s computers. After criminal offenses, the investigations often come to nothing.
Access with “remote maintenance software” permitted
The young Indian called his victims – both from the city of Salzburg – and lied or “informed” them about hackers who were working on their computers. The calls were made in English, some of them in English with an Indian accent. Because computers get slower over time, the people of Salzburg believed the caller. Those affected gave the 18-year-old permission to access the computer using “remote maintenance software”.
The perpetrator was investigated using payment data
This also made it possible for the perpetrator to log into the e-banking platforms. The Indian then transferred money to an account that WILL be used to buy cryptocurrencies on a cryptocurrency exchange. “By evaluating the investigation, we managed to track down the suspect,” says a police spokeswoman. The Criminal Police’s IT group has been able to trace the cash flows to the man.
Calcutta, a metropolis of millions as a hotspot
The criminologists also found that the server from which the perpetrator accessed the victims’ PCs was in Calcutta. More than 14 million people live in the metropolitan area of the city. It is well known that organized fraud gangs work there in “call centers” with mostly 20 to 25 people and look for possible victims on a large scale.
According to the police, it has not yet been determined whether – and if so, how – the Austrian authorities can get hold of the suspect. The criminalists are said to be in contact with the Indian authorities. Further investigations are ongoing.