Alleged leader of Kelvin Security hacker gang arrested in Spain

Jason Macuray
Spanish police said they arrested a Venezuelan national last week for his alleged involvement in the Kelvin Security hacking group.

Spanish police said they arrested a Venezuelan national last week for his alleged involvement in the Kelvin Security hacking group.

The suspect, unnamed in a police statement on Sunday, was charged with crimes related to belonging to a criminal organization, revealing secrets, computer damage and money laundering. The police said they searched the detainee’s house in the port city of Alicante, seizing his technical equipment.

Calling him the “leader” of Kelvin Security, the police said he was primarily involved in using cryptocurrency exchanges to launder money obtained by Kelvin Security from the illegal sale of stolen data, police said.

Law enforcement has been chasing the group’s members since 2021 after they hit several Spanish city councils with a “sophisticated” cyberattack.

The group has carried out more than 300 high-level cyberattacks in the last three years, according to Spanish police, targeting strategic industries in over 90 countries, including the U.S., Germany, Italy, Argentina, Chile and Japan.

The victims in Spain mostly included critical infrastructure facilities and government institutions, the police said. The hackers attempted to obtain user credentials and extract confidential information to sell on criminal forums on the dark web.

In July 2022, the group allegedly breached a bank in Chile, leaking the data of almost 18,000 customers. In January of this year, Kelvin Security reportedly hacked into a leading research institute in Hamburg, Germany, posting the stolen data on the dark web.

Researchers have been tracking Kelvin Security since at least 2013. Its most recent attack happened in mid-November when the group targeted the headquarters of an unnamed energy company. According to the police, the hackers managed to exfiltrate a database with confidential information of more than 85,000 users.

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Daryna Antoniuk
is a freelance reporter for Recorded Future News based in Ukraine. She writes about cybersecurity startups, cyberattacks in Eastern Europe and the state of the cyberwar between Ukraine and Russia. She previously was a tech reporter for Forbes Ukraine. Her work has also been published at Sifted, The Kyiv Independent and The Kyiv Post.

 

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