British police detained suspects in hacking one of the largest and oldest banks in Malta, Bank of Valletta, which occurred in February 2019.
National crime control agents arrested two men in London, aged 22 and 17, and a third suspect, a 39-year-old man, was detained in Belfast, Northern Ireland. All three were arrested on charges of money laundering, and it is still unclear whether they acted as organizers of a robbery or helped hackers launder stolen funds. It is reported that in connection with the investigation, the search for other suspects continues.
Let me remind you that during the hacking of the Malta Bank of Valletta, the attackers tried to steal about 13 million euros, and as soon as the bank's employees noticed unauthorized operations, it was decided to urgently suspend the work. As a result, all Bank of Valletta branches took their ATMs, PoS systems offline, and the bank’s website, electronic services, and internal mail were temporarily shut down.
And although last year it was reported that specialists were able to reverse the transactions committed by crackers and regain control over the stolen funds, it now turns out that this is not entirely true. According to British law enforcement officials, approximately 800,000 pounds (about one million dollars) still went to the bank accounts of three suspects.
In the few hours between the receipt of the stolen funds and the cancellation of transactions, the three suspects managed to make a series of card payments and withdraw cash in the total amount of 340,000 pounds (approximately $ 445,000). This money was spent on purchases in expensive stores. For example, about £ 110,000 was spent on Rolex watches and the purchase of Jaguar and Audi A5 cars at the London Motor Show.