Russian cybercriminals are setting up home in Turkey

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Cybercrime in Turkey is reportedly on the rise once more as an influx of Russian emigrants set up homes in the country, according to a new report by the Financial Times.

The news comes amid ongoing military conscription changes under Putin’s leadership, which will see citizens between the ages of 18 and 30 be called up for military service, and those served draft notices banned from leaving the country.

According to the report, police in Turkey have been forced to react and launch investigations into cybercriminals as numbers look to be surging.

Are Russian cybercriminals moving to Turkey?

The new findings suggest that Russian cybercriminals are using “relatively low-level” scams together with their local counterparts to evade detection, likely in a bid to earn a living after having their lives turned upside down while fleeing from their home country.

One unnamed official cited by the Financial Times said: “In less than one year, the reports have increased a lot.” This claim relates to Antalya, a coastal city in the south of Turkey bordering the Mediterranean Sea that has long been a favorite of Russian holidaymakers.

Another anonymous officer said that Russian cybercriminals residing in the country have been careful not to target Turkish citizens in a bid to deflect attention.

Illegal marketplaces have been flooded in recent months with credit card details and login credentials, but more alarmingly, hackers are also using stealers to obtain other personally identifiable information, such as browser cookies, maliciously. All of this can help buyers of the stolen data paint a more detailed picture of victims so that they can orchestrate more sophisticated attacks that are more likely to go under the radar.

A third unnamed source cited by the Financial Times, this time in the form of a Turkish information security specialist, said that they observed newly arriving Russian hackers teach sophisticated code to their Turkish counterparts while simultaneously leveraging European contacts to sell the data for more.

The precise scale remains to be seen, but with political and social conflict remaining high both inside Russia and between Russia and many other countries, it’s possible that this could be a trend that has no intentions of slowing down anytime soon.

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Craig Hale

With several years’ experience freelancing in tech and automotive circles, Craig’s specific interests lie in technology that is designed to better our lives, including AI and ML, productivity aids, and smart fitness. He is also passionate about cars and the decarbonisation of personal transportation. As an avid bargain-hunter, you can be sure that any deal Craig finds is top value!