Brothers Or Scammers: On The Use Of Multiple Online Identities By Financial Fraudsters


Stolen financial information is now readily available in online illicit markets. Offenders who specialize in the theft of financial information use such convergence settings to meet and deal with other offenders who specialize in the monetization of stolen financial information. Online illicit markets are said to pose an important threat because of their accessibility, the number of stolen financial information they make available and the price at which they are offered. On the other side, participating in online illicit markets has been known to be risky as participants often take advantage of each other. Market administrators have also been known to use their position to steal private information and/or sell fake services. This paper seeks to empirically validate the threat that such online illicit markets are likely to pose by analyzing the level of deception of their participants. To do so, we analyze the traces that offenders leave behind and link together the online accounts that they use. Our results focus on the activity of offenders who use multiple online identities. We examine why and how these participants register multiple accounts and their likely impact on the fluidity and reliability of online illicit markets.

This content has been updated on 8 August 2016 at 17 h 58 min.