Nov.29 - International police forces have broken up a Romanian syndicate allegedly behind a 30 million US dollar credit card fraud which officials say is Australia's biggest theft of its kind. Hayley Platt reports.
It's thought to be the largest credit card theft in Australia's history. 30 million dollars was stolen from half a million Australians. Police say they've traced the fraud back to an eastern European crime syndicate. (SOUNDBITE) (English) COORDINATOR OF CYBER CRIME OPERATIONS, AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL POLICE, BRAD MARDEN, SAYING: "It was actually done remotely from Romania, where they accessed a security vulnerability in each of those stores, that enabled them to get into those computers and access the credit cards directly. And I must stress, that security vulnerability no longer exists." A joint international investigation was launched last year after 100 small businesses were hacked using special software. Fake credit cards were made using the stolen data. And bank machines were also fitted with data capturing devices. Suspicious transactions were traced to Hong Kong, Europe and the U.S. 13 countries in all were involved in the investigation. On Monday police raided 36 homes across Romania. They arrested 16 people in connection with suspected fraud and confiscated numerous computers and documents. One ot those arrested is an international wrestling champion. Gheorghe Ingnat known as The Carpathian Bear allegedly fitted devices to banks in Australia.