|Le Kim Dinh, the head of the ring, at the police station. — Photo vietnamnet.vn
HA NOI (VNS) — Police from the Ministry of Public Security's Crime Prevention Department have arrested five suspects in a wiretapping ring that provided compromised phone apps to customers across Viet Nam, police said.
The suspects include Le Kim Dinh, 33, and Nguyen Thi Hue, 29, who were arrested yesterday in HCM City. Others, including Nguyen Van Cao, 28, Le Duc Anh, 24, and Nguyen Van Nguyen, 25, were also arrested yesterday in Ha Noi for allegedly gaining illegal access to digital devices to steal money.
Police also interrogated other suspects possibly involved in the ring's activities.
All the suspects are related as cousins.
According to the initial investigation, Dinh, the ringleader, along with his cousins, bought wiretapping software from abroad and sold it to people who wanted to tap into other people's mobile phones to steal their data.
The ring set up two companies, in Ha Noi and HMC City, and multiple websites to advertise their apps and attract customers.
The group's members contacted clients and gave them instructions on how to install the apps on other people's phones to eavesdrop on their conversations.
For using their services, each user had to pay the ring VND1.5 million (US$68) per month.
Once installed on a mobile phone, the wiretapping app would steal data by recording calls and collecting text messages and images.
It would then transfer all the stolen data to a server in a foreign country, police said.
Thousands of people have bought and used the apps, and this group has earned billions of dong from their activities, according to the results of the initial investigation.
The incident is being extensively investigated.
Last month, police in HCM City also dismantled a similar case. — VNS