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Darknet Cybercriminals Share Tips To Avoid Arrest And Jail

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A team of specialists from Digital Shadows conducted a study of forums on the darknet dedicated to discussions of cybercriminals on methods to avoid arrest and jail.

One of the often cited beliefs of the Russian-speaking cybercriminal community is that law enforcement will leave hackers alone if they don't target companies and organizations in the countries of the former Soviet Union.

“If you work with targets in the Russian Federation, then law enforcement agencies will hunt you down to the end, but if you attack companies in the EU or the US, nothing will happen, no one will worry,” one of the users noted.

When it comes to foreign travel, forum users assume that hackers are safe as long as they stay in Russia.

Operational security (OPSEC) practices are also widely discussed, and forum users are sharing ways to avoid arrest and maintain anonymity. Clandestine forums mention all options, from virtual to physical. For example, one of the most popular topics of discussion is encrypting or removing a hard drive as a way to stop a law enforcement investigation. However, not all forum users are sure of the effectiveness of this method.

"Many attackers have been defeated due to poor OPSEC practices, such as using a spouse's email address, forgetting to mask their IP address, or allowing their real name and address to appear on the Web," the experts explained.

Most hackers believe that users of darknet forums will “sell” each other, but others believe that forging connections with other members of the criminal industry can push attackers to a higher hierarchy.

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