An operation conducted by agents of the National Police has ended with the arrest of 94 people for fraud committed using the SIM swapping in different municipalities of Spain. As confirmed by the Police itself, it is a criminal organization and each one of these people had a different role (forgers, muleteers, profit launderers …). This operation took place during the past week and those arrested are accused of committing alleged crimes of continued fraud, money laundering, membership of a criminal group, and even falsification and usurpation of marital status.
Up to 240,000 euros stolen from an affected person
The scam was carried out as follows. The first thing was to get the access codes to online banking of the victim through the phishing method. This allowed scammers to access accounts, but was unable to operate due to two-factor authentication in the form of SMS to validate the operation.
To get hold of the messages, cloned or duplicated the SIM card of the customer cheating the employees of a phone shop with falsified documentation. This impersonated the victim and obtained a copy of the card from his mobile phone. Thanks to this, they could receive messages from the bank with the necessary keys to authorize monetary transactions.
In all, the criminals would have stolen 504,800 euros, of which 240,000 euros are from a single affected party. The arrests of 94 people were made in the provinces of Almería, Baleares, Barcelona, Burgos, Granada, Guipúzcoa, La Coruña, León, Madrid, Málaga, Murcia, Salamanca, Santa Cruz de Tenerife and Valencia.
This is not the first news of SIM swapping of the year. In fact, a few weeks ago more than 600,000 euros were swindled with this technique. The National Police, together with the Mossos d’Esquadra, arrested 10 men on June 9 as alleged perpetrators of the crimes of fraud, documentary falsification, usurpation of marital status, illegitimate use of bank cards and membership of a criminal group.