A US national has pleaded guilty to operating the carding site Skynet Market and selling financial information belonging to tens of thousands of US victims.
The U.S. national Michael D. Mihalo, aka Dale Michael Mihalo Jr. and ggmccloud1, pleaded guilty to operating a carding site on the dark web called Skynet Market and selling financial information belonging to tens of thousands of victims in the US.
A carding site is an illegal marketplace where stolen credit card data and other personal info are offered for sale.
Mihalo and his co-conspirators also operated on other darknet marketplaces, including AlphaBay Market, Wall Street Market, and Hansa Market. The man and his co-conspirators sold the credit and debit card data of tens of thousands of U.S. victims between Feb. 22, 2016, and Oct. 1, 2019.
Mihalo earned at least $1 million worth of cryptocurrencies at the time of the sales, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Monero.
Mihalo is suspected to be the leader of a team that helped him sell this stolen financial information on the darknet. Each of the co-conspirators benefitted from the trusted reputation Mihalo, as ggmccloud1, had built on the darknet sites to sell more stolen card data. One of the man’s conspirators, Taylor Ross Staats (40) of Texas, served as a “card-checker.” Staats personally earned at least $21,000 worth of Bitcoin for his activities.
“Mihalo personally possessed, sent, and received the information associated with 49,084 stolen payment cards with the intent that the payment card information would be trafficked on darknet sites, all in furtherance of the conspiracy.” reads the press release published by DoJ. “Mihalo earned at least $1 million worth of cryptocurrencies at the time of the sales, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Monero. These funds have significantly appreciated since that time.”
Mihalo pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit access device fraud, one count of access device fraud, and six counts of money laundering. The man faces a maximum penalty of five years in jail for the conspiracy count and a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison on each of the remaining counts.
Mihalo must also forfeit to the government any property he has personally obtained through the illegal activities. The overall amount will be determined by the judge at sentencing.
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(SecurityAffairs – hacking, Skynet Market)
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