JPMorgan, PNC Hit by Cybercrime

JPMorgan Chase, PNC and Ally Financial are among the banks hacked into as part of an international cybercrime scandal.
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) --

JPMorgan Chase

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PNC Financial Services

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Ally Financial

are among the banks hacked into as part of an international cybercrime identity theft scandal.

According to the

Wall Street Journal

, more than 100 people in the U.S. and the U.K. were arrested or charged related to the alleged crimes. at least $3 million was stolen from U.S. bank accounts, citing federal and state prosecutors, who announced the indictments in New York on Thursday.

The investigation could expand to other countries, they say.

Separately, 20 people were arrested on this week in London for allegedly stealing approximately $9.5 million from U.K. bank accounts. The action was related to the larger bank hacking scheme.

According to the article, the U.S. investigation has been in progress for the past year and focused on so-called mules -- those people who had been selected to open bank accounts using falsified informationm -- who then transfer the stolen money to Eastern Europe.

Hackers install computer viruses (unknown to the recipient) that are emailed to the user. Once the user clicks on the seemingly innocuous email, software is then activated to monitor the user's passwords and usernames, the



The mules typically withdrew roughly $10,000 and keeping around 8% to 10%, the article states.

Bank of America

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TD Bank

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were among those banks used to open accounts in which the stolen money was deposited.

The federal charges dished out to those involved include "conspiracy to commit bank and wire fraud, to possess false identification documents, to commit money laundering and false use of a passport." State charges include grand larceny and identity theft. U.K. officials said that 11 people were charged with conspiracy to defraud and money laundering, among other things, while nine others were on bail, the



--Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York.

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