The US government has pulled the plug on an online marketplace that sold Social Security numbers for over 20 million Americans.
The SSNDOB Marketplace operated as a series of websites that listed the personal information 24 million individuals in the US that included ssndob.ws, ssndob.vip, ssndob.club and blackjob.biz and shut them down.
The SSNDOB Marketplace raked in over $19 million in revenue by selling the stolen personal information, which also included names and dates of births. The administrators behind SSNDOB advertised the marketplace on underground forums on the dark web, where hackers buy and sell goods.
Chainalysis said SSNDOB had been accepting Bitcoin since 2015. Users were able to browse available PII by country and search for specific names or other characteristics. Cybercriminals who purchased this information could use it to conduct phishing attacks and blackmail scam campaigns, as well as to create accounts on social media and financial services under assumed identities.
The marketplace pulled in $22 million in Bitcoin from over 100,000 transactions. The median payment size was at $80, but some transfers reached $100,000, which suggests that some power users were buying the personal information in bulk.
The US managed to take down the SSNDOB websites by working with Cyprus and Latvia law enforcement authorities. This led the to execute a domain seizure takeover on Tuesday. But it’s not clear if federal authorities identified any of the administrators behind the SSNDOB Marketplace.