An African Hacker Stole $2 Million Worth of Airline Tickets Through Phishing

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An African hacker, Eric Donys Simeu, 32, of Cameroon pulled off a massive phishing scam that saw him making off with over $2m (£1.38m) worth airline tickets. According to the US Justice Department, Simeu sent out numerous targeted phishing emails between July 2011 and September 2014 to employees of various air travel firms.

The emails were specifically sent to impersonate official communications, in order to trick the victims into opening fake websites and logging in with their official details. The hacker targeted those employees with access to GDS (Global Distribution System) network, which is generally used by air travel and tourism firms to access airline severs to buy or sell flight tickets.

According to the US officials he obtained the GDS login credentials for two companies which includes one from Atlanta, Georgia, and another from Southlake, Texas. After logging into the GDS network he issued numerous airline tickets, which he either used for his personal travels or resold to customers in West Africa at a fraction of their real price.

Simeu was arrested by the French police in September 2014 when attempting to use one of his own fraudulent air tickets to travel from Casablanca, Morocco, to Paris. The US finally extradited Simeu and the case is still being investigated by the FBI and the Justice Department.

 

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