Suspected Zeus Leader arrested in Switzerland

Law enforcers reported that last month, 40-year-old Ukrainian citizen Vyacheslav Penchukov, the leader of Zeus malware developers, was arrested in Geneva.

Let me remind you that we also wrote that US Authorities Announced the Arrest of a Ukrainian Who Developed Raccoon Malware, and also that Russian Hackers Planned to Disrupt Eurovision 2022.

Vyacheslav Penchukov, also known online as Tank, is considered one of the leaders of the JabberZeus hack group that was behind the creation of the well-known Zeus banking Trojan.

Information security journalist Brian Krebs one of the first reported about the detention of Penchukov, who has been on the FBI’s most wanted list for more than 10 years. Now, the Swiss Federal Department of Justice and Police has confirmed the information about the arrest, which took place in Geneva on October 23, 2022, where Penchukov arrived to meet his wife.

Zeus leader arrested

It is known that Tank is currently awaiting extradition to the United States, although he can still appeal against the decision of the authorities. US authorities accuse the detainee, among other things, of extortion, bank fraud and identity theft.

Let me remind you that for the first time the US Department of Justice filed charges against Penchukov back in 2012, accusing him of conspiracy to steal millions of dollars using bank account numbers, passwords, personal identification numbers and other confidential information stolen using the aforementioned Zeus malware.

According to Bleeping Computer, Penchukov was also involved in the Maze and Egregor ransomware. Last year, journalists wrote that he was among the suspects arrested in January 2021 by the Ukrainian police (as part of an international operation against Egregor operators that attacked Ubisoft and Crytek, for example).

However, as Brian Krebs writes, “Tank” managed to avoid prosecution for many years due to its extensive connections, in particular, friendship with the now deceased son of former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, Viktor Yanukovych Jr., who was the godfather of Penchukov’s daughter.

As one of the leaders of the JabberZeus group, Penchukov managed stolen bank details and money mules that transferred money from victims’ accounts to accounts controlled by hackers, police said.

Along with eight other suspects, he was charged with conspiracy to engage in racketeering, conspiracy to commit computer fraud and identity theft, aggravated identity theft, and multiple bank fraud cases.

Two of Penchukov’s accomplices, Ukrainian citizens Yevhen Kulibaba and Yuriy Konovalenko, pleaded guilty in November 2014 after being extradited from the UK and then, in 2015, were sentenced to two years and ten months in prison.
User Review
0 (0 votes)
Comments Rating 0 (0 reviews)

Daniel Zimmermann

Daniel Zimmermann has been writing on security and malware subjects for many years and has been working in the security industry for over 10 years. Daniel was educated at the Saarland University in Saarbrücken, Germany and currently lives in New York.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to top button