Largest Online Identity Theft Ring Busted
In what law enforcement officials described as one
of the largest illegal online centers that trafficked
hundreds of thousands of stolen credit card numbers,
the ShadowCrew.com website founder is going to jail.
Andrew Mantovani, a 24 year old man, was sentenced
to 32 months in jail in Newark, New Jersey.
He pleaded guilty in November, 2005 to being the
ringleader of the ShadowCrew.com website which
he operated as an online marketplace where
people could buy and sell stolen identity
In addition to stolen identity information, buyers
could also acquire credit and debit card
numbers from sellers on the Shadowcrew
Among Mr. Mantovani's illegal activity which
ultimately lead to his conviction were:
- Online "phishing" and spamming
- Obtained personal information from victims
- Purchasing merchandise online using stolen identities
- Stealing 18 million email addresses containing passwords
Operating the website which trafficked 1.5 million stolen credit
and debit card account information totallying $4 million in damages.
While the Shadowcrew website was shut down by the FBI in
Oct., 2004, the on-going prosecution of the 21 total people
directly associated with this identity theft ring lead up to
Mr. Mantovani's recent federal court sentencing.
In addition to the 32 months in jail, the Shadowcrew
ring leader will also have to spend 3 years in probation
as well as pay a $5,000 fine.
So, our tip for today is to protect yourself against
the countless criminal masterminds still at large.
Arm yourself with continuous identity theft monitoring
to guard against hidden criminal trafficking of your
personal information in the many other ShadowCrew
like websites not yet busted by law enforcement.