From pizza to cybercrime: DarkMarket mastermind jailed

Graham Cluley
@gcluley

The mastermind behind one of the world’s most notorious underground internet forums was sent to jail for four years and eight months on Friday.

33-year-old Renukanth Subramaniam created DarkMarket, a website for cybercriminals and fraudsters to buy and sell stolen credit card details, driving license information and bank account passwords for the purposes of identity theft. Furthermore, DarkMarket members would share information on how to infect innocent users’ computers with spyware and Trojan horses.

Blackfriars Crown Court in London heard that Sri Lanka-born Subramaniam, who went by the online handle “JiLsi”, ran his DarkMarket operations from internet cafes in an attempt to cover his tracks. At its peak, DarkMarket is believed to have numbered some 2500 members, with the criminals who collaborated via the site causing global losses estimated at tens of millions of pounds.

Subramaniam may have thought that crime was a fast track out of his former life as a pizza delivery man,…

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Graham Cluley is a veteran of the anti-virus industry having worked for a number of security companies since the early 1990s when he wrote the first ever version of Dr Solomon's Anti-Virus Toolkit for Windows. Now an independent security analyst, he regularly makes media appearances and is an international public speaker on the topic of computer security, hackers, and online privacy. Follow him on Twitter at @gcluley, or drop him an email.