Ukrainian man charged in US with ‘Raccoon’ malware scheme

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — A Ukrainian man has been arrested on federal cybercrime charges in an alleged scheme that for years used malware to steal information from millions of people around the world, U.S. prosecutors announced Tuesday.

An indictment unsealed this month charges Mark Sokolovsky, 26, with renting out the Raccoon Infostealer program to people who used it to steal emails, passwords, financial data and other personal information from more than 2 million people.

Sokolovsky was arrested by authorities in the Netherlands in March and is appealing to a court there to stop his extradition to Texas for trial, prosecutors said. Court records do not list an attorney for him in the U.S. and his Dutch lawyer could not be immediately identified.

Sokolovsky is charged with four counts, including conspiracy to commit computer and wire fraud. Prosecutors allege that starting in 2018, he began developing and then leasing out Raccoon for about $200 a month in cryptocurrency. His clients would then use email phishing and other ruses to get people to install the program on their computers and then use it to steal their information, according to court records.

Investigators have identified more than 50 million unique pieces of information — including credit card and bank account numbers — that they say were stolen with the program. Prosecutors say they have yet to uncover the full scope of the operation.

The FBI has set up a website where people can check whether they may have been a victim of a Racoon attack:

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