Mircea-Ilie Ispasoiu, a Romanian citizen, made his first appearance in Newark federal court yesterday. Ispasoiu, was arrested in 2014 by Romanian authorities and was extradited in January to Essex County, New Jersey for his involvement in orchestrating a computer hacking scheme that targeted retailers, security companies, medical offices and others throughout the U.S.
The 29-year-old, who appeared in federal court yesterday, has been charged with wire fraud, aggravated identity theft and related charges stemming from his theft of credit card data, usernames and passwords, as well as other sensitive information.
The indictment listed multiple victimized companies from New Jersey including a restaurant in Montclair and a car dealership North Brunswick. Additionally, an unnamed “large security firm” was included on the list of victimized companies; the security firm handles background checks as well as fingerprinting for job applicants throughout the nation.
The indictment against Ispasoiu states that from 2011 to 2014, Isasoiu worked at a large Romanian financial institution where he used his position as a computer systems administrator to hack numerous networks in order to initiate his hacking scheme.
According to authorities, Ispasoiu was able to hack into all these systems by installing malware that recorded key strokes and took screenshots of the victim’s computers. The stolen data was then secretly emailed to one of Ispasoui’s email addresses where he then used the data to make unauthorized money transfers.
If found guilty on all counts Ispasoiu could be sentenced to more than 30 years in prison and charged millions in fines.
Identity theft continues to be one of the fastest growing crimes in the country, affecting nearly ten million Americans a year. Learn about the different types of identity theft as well as ways that you can avoid becoming a victim.