Phony credit card gang nabbed

KUALA LUMPUR: With only basic knowledge in coding and the use of a web debugging proxy, several syndicates took to their computers to “purchase” electronic and luxury appliances from online shopping companies.

The 11 individuals involved never met each other and communicated only through social media.

They would visit the online shopping websites and purchase all their items using phony credit card details while the debugging app was activated.

The app would fetch the transaction data from the bank to the online shopping website, and trick the website into believing that the transaction was approved, when in reality, it had been declined by the bank.

The syndicates would later sell the items they had purchased illegally for a much lower price.

Their activities were detected by police, but only after two online shopping companies here accumulated losses of almost RM1mil.

Federal Commercial Crime Investigation Department (CCID) deputy director of Cyber Crime and Multimedia Investigation, Senior Asst Comm Mohd Kamarudin Md Din, said police were alerted about the syndicates following reports from the two companies.

“From April 25, over the span of three days, we launched a series of raids in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Pahang and Kelantan and arrested nine men and two women aged between 20 and 40.

“We have remanded them while we investigate the case under cheating and hacking,” he said, adding that none of them had prior records.

SAC Mohd Kamarudin said police investigations revealed the 11 suspects were from four separate syndicates who would on occasion share information with each other.

“Among the items they purchased illegally included GoPro cameras, mobile phones and electronic appliances.

“Based on our investigations, they caused two companies losses of RM118,000 and RM800,000,” he said.