Russian fraud king sentenced to 10 years in prison
Russian fraud king sentenced to 10 years in prison

A Russian has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for fraud and money laundering for participating in the digital advertising program Methbot.

According to the Ministry of Justice, Alexander Zhukov and several conspirators reached an agreement with advertising networks about online advertising between September 2014 and December 2016. But they use bot farms and rent servers to deceive fake users who visit fake versions of websites such as the New York Times and the New York Daily News .

These ads are not shown to human users. But Zhukov received $7 million from a scam that caused Internet traffic. According to the Department of Justice, he was named Methop after his fake ad network Media Methan.

Sitting in front of computer keyboards in Bulgaria and Russia, US Attorney Blombez said in a press release, “He dared to design and implement a complex cyber fraud against the multi-million dollar digital advertising industry.” Thousands of companies have fallen victim to the United States. This caused the company to pay exorbitant advertising prices.

As part of the detailed plan, Zhukov hired programmers and others to help build the infrastructure that made the plan possible. 1,900 servers were used to generate millions of fake pageviews for online advertising.

Zhukov made $7 million from this transaction and transferred the money to offshore banks around the world.

The US said companies like Pepsi, charities and other advertisers are charging them high prices because digital bots see ads.

Through the digital advertising program Methbot

Prosecutors said Zhukov and his associates from Russia and Kazakhstan destroyed a complex and fragile ecosystem of online advertising. They used rented servers in Dallas and Amsterdam to bypass fraud protection and simulate millions of people searching for online ads. Online activities.

Zhukov made his position clear during the three-week trial, saying that he had never misled anyone. And I think it gives the industry what they want, a way to drive website traffic at a cheap (albeit artificial) cost.

Authorities said he branded the businessman a promoter despite being the fraud king himself. In May, a jury found Zhukov guilty of fraud, wire transfer fraud and money laundering conspiracy.

Zhukov was arrested in Bulgaria in 2018 and extradited to New York. In addition to 10 years in prison, Zhukov was also ordered to pay $3.8 million in forfeiture payments.

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