An IT boffin accused of being the brains behind numerous high-profile hacking cases including against Trump Hotels has been arrested while on the toilet.
Andrii Kolpakov, a 30-year-old Ukrainian national, was arrested in Lepe in the southern Spanish region of Andalusia.
He is considered one of the leaders of a criminal organisation known as FIN7 that has allegedly carried out several high-profile hacks against mainly hotel and gaming companies based in the US and UK.
Two other organisation members were reportedly arrested in Germany and Poland, Fedir Hladyr and Dmytro Fedorov respectively.
The FBI believes they hacked security systems and collected the credit card details of up to 15 million people and companies across 47 states in the US.
The criminals used the malware ‘Carbanak’, whose main creator was a Ukrainian hacker arrested by Spanish police earlier this year.
With stolen data for millions of people, the alleged hackers ran several businesses on the darknet to trade with other criminal groups.
According to the FBI and Spanish authorities, the hackers stole data from fast food chains in the US such as Chipotle Mexican Grill, Chili’s Grill & Bar, Arby’s and Jason’s Deli, among others.
The organisation reportedly recruited hackers for their different projects and Kolpakov is believed to have supervised the new members.
Prosecutor Anthony Teelucksingh, head of cybercrime of the United States Department of Justice, said: “Arresting the (three) men is a great step towards dismantling the organisation.”
Kolpakov is waiting to be extradited to America, while the US Embassy in Madrid is going to honour the national police who arrested him, according to local media.
The investigation is ongoing.