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In November 2022, a multinational operation was launched to dismantle the notorious cybercrime service known as iSpoof. This service enabled criminals to manipulate the caller identification system and deceive unsuspecting individuals by posing as representatives from reputable organizations, such as banks.
The iSpoof website, which was openly accessible to the public, enticed customers with the allure of anonymity and the ability to display any desired phone number on the recipient’s screen. Users of the service could purchase call minutes using bitcoins, and the website even featured a promotional video showcasing how effortlessly one could perpetrate scams over the phone.
However, the veil of anonymity provided by iSpoof proved to be deceptive. Law enforcement agencies successfully identified over 50,000 users of the service, leading to the arrest of approximately 200 individuals in the UK alone for engaging in actual fraudulent activities facilitated by iSpoof.
Massive Global Phone Spoofing Scheme Exposed: iSpoof Creator Sentenced to 13 Years in Prison
Law enforcement authorities have revealed that approximately 10 million fraudulent calls were conducted worldwide within a year using iSpoof, with a staggering 3.5 million of these occurring exclusively in the UK. As a consequence, the UK suffered losses amounting to 48 million pounds sterling.
TJ Fletcher, a 35-year-old individual hailing from London, who served as the mastermind and proprietor behind the iSpoof platform, pleaded guilty to charges of enabling fraud and money laundering. Notably, Fletcher maintained an opulent lifestyle, possessing luxurious vehicles and frequently indulging in extravagant travels. Estimates by the police indicate that he amassed approximately 1.9 million pounds sterling (equivalent to 189 million rubles) through his illicit service. Consequently, Fletcher received a sentencing of 13 years and four months in prison last week.
Law enforcement authorities strongly advise citizens to exercise vigilance and refrain from placing blind trust in the caller identification displayed on their devices. In instances where individuals receive calls from individuals purporting to represent banks or other organizations and request personal or financial information, it is advisable to independently contact the official number of the institution. Furthermore, it is crucial to never disclose passwords, PIN numbers, or confirmation codes to anyone during a phone call to safeguard personal security.