The suspect who is now facing cyber theft charges, worked with a UK citizen going online by the handle K!NG. It was gathered that K!NG would distribute and infect victims with the Reveton ransomware, while Uadiale would collect payments and send the cash to K!NG, in the UK.
Ransomware is malicious software that locks you out of your computer or your data, and demands money to let you back in. Reveton pretends to be a warning from your country’s national police service, locks you out of your PC, and threatens criminal proceedings within 48 hours – usually for unspecified copyright offences.
Of course, you can bypass the prosecution if you pay a “fine” to the cybercriminals. The amount they extort is typically about $200.
The Microsoft engineer allegedly obtained prepaid debit cards and, using the online alias of Mike Roland, would use an unnamed messaging program to send K!NG the account numbers for the prepaid cards.
Prosecutors claim that K!NG would transfer the “victims’ ransomware payments from GreenDot MoneyPaks to the prepaid debit card account numbers provided by Uadiale.” Then K!NG “would message Uadiale the last four digits of the loaded prepaid debit cards and the amount loaded on each.”
Court documents claim “Uadiale would then withdraw the loaded ransomware payments from the prepaid debit cards as cash at automated-teller-machine or point-of-sale locations.”
He would later convert these funds into the Liberty Reserve digital currency and send the proceeds to his UK partner, keeping 30% of the funds, part of his cut.
If found guilty on all charges, he risks a maximum sentence of up to 20 years in prison, a fine of up to $500,000, and up to three years of supervised release. Uadiale has been set free on a $100,000 bond.