The Australian Federal Police (AFP) has today executed search warrants at an address in Lara, Victoria, as part of an international coordinated effort with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Canadian Radio–television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) and the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation.
The investigation targeted criminal networks involved in the use and distribution of malicious software (malware), in particular Remote Access Trojan (RAT) technology.
Criminals use RATs to gain unauthorised access to computer systems to commit a range of offences including theft of personal information and intellectual property.
The criminal use of this software in Australia constitutes offences under the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth) including ‘unauthorised modification of data to cause impairment’, the maximum penalty is 10 years’ imprisonment.
AFP Acting Commander, Manager Cyber Operations Chris Goldsmid addressed Australians thinking of getting involved in this kind of illegal activity.
“This operation shows we have global reach, strong international partnerships and commitment to stamping out this type of cybercrime,” Acting Commander Goldsmid said.
“It’s also a reminder for all Australians to practice good cyber hygiene. We would like to remind the public of the importance of keeping their software updated. Vulnerabilities in old or unprotected software are often the target for criminals who wish to gain control over your system.”
The investigation continues.