As reported by media outlets, this Tuesday on September 28th Russian hacker Alexei Burkov landed at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport. Right after that, the deported Russian national was detained by the police, according to Russia`s Interior Ministry.
Who is Alexei Burkov?
Alexei Burkov, 31, was sentenced in June last year by the United States to nine years for operating two sites devoted to the facilitation of payment card fraud, computer hacking, and other crimes, U.S Department of Justice said in a statement on Burkov`s trial. Previously, the hacker was arrested in Israel in December 2015 and in November 2019 was extradited to the United States. In January last year Alexei Burkov pleaded guilty to different charges which cover money laundering, fraud, computer intrusions and identity theft. In his home country, Russia, he was charged in absentia while Russian law enforcement was trying to locate him with the help of Interpol.
The Department of Justice said that Alexei Burkov organized selling and stealing credit card data and was in charge of a cybercrime forum where criminals could make advertisements and service offers. Burkov`s family hoped that he would be released in the exchange process between Russia and Israel when a U.S-Israeli woman was jailed in October two years ago for drug offenses in Russia.
The U.S Embassy in Moscow didn’t make any comment whether Alexei Burkov was deported. The United States and Russia currently do not have any extradition treaties. In Russia Burkov is accused of trading confidential financial data and of bank card fraud, crimes that were committed reportedly from 2008 to 2015, Ministry`s of Internal Affairs spokesperson Irina Volk said.
On many news platforms this event is seen as part of current American President Joe Biden’s new cybersecurity policy which aims at advancing more decisive means in fighting the cybercriminal ecosystem. Recent years saw a significant rise in this field which had serious impacts on American society. The American President had several talks on this matter with Russian President Vladimir Putin concerning those cybercriminal elements that operate from Russian territory. Some Russian and American officials expressed their opinions on the topic. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov thinks that Mr. Burkov’s extradition could be seen as “rather a positive development” in the U.S.-Russia diplomatic relations.
“There is no indication that the Russian government has taken action to crack down on ransomware actors that are operating in the permissive environment they have created there,” Federal Bureau of Investigation Deputy Director Paul Abbate made a notice at an intelligence conference this month.1
- U.S. reports the Russian hacker – Wall St Journal