A British citizen, who was responsible for his role as the administrator of the now-defunct iSpoof online phone number spoofing service, has been sentenced to 13 years and 4 months in prison. The individual, named Tejay Fletcher and residing in London, received the sentence on May 18, 2023, after pleading guilty to various cyber offenses last month. These offenses included facilitating fraud and possessing and transferring criminal property.
iSpoof was a paid service that allowed fraudsters to hide their phone numbers and pretend to be representatives from banks, tax offices, and other official organizations in order to deceive victims. The scam involved a help desk approach, where the targets were falsely warned about suspicious activity on their accounts and tricked into revealing sensitive financial information or making money transfers to accounts controlled by the threat actors.
The U.K. Metropolitan Police revealed that the criminals behind this scheme impersonated representatives of well-known banks such as Barclays, Santander, HSBC, Lloyds, Halifax, First Direct, Natwest, Nationwide, and TSB.
According to a statement by the Metropolitan Police, the iSpoof website offered various packages to users who could purchase minutes using Bitcoin to make calls through the software. The total losses suffered by victims in the U.K. alone are estimated to exceed £48 million ($59.8 million), with global losses reaching at least £100 million ($124.6 million).
In November 2022, iSpoof was dismantled as part of a coordinated law enforcement operation, leading to the arrest of Tejay Fletcher and 168 other individuals associated with the operation. It is believed that Fletcher generated illicit proceeds totaling approximately £1.7 - £1.9 million ($2.1 - $2.3 million) and owned luxury assets such as a Range Rover, a Lamborghini Urus, and high-end watches from Rolex and Audemars Piguet.
Detective Superintendent Helen Rance stated that Fletcher actively marketed iSpoof on the Telegram Channel known as The iSpoof Club. He used the channel to promote iSpoof, provide updates to users, and announce developments related to the website. During a search of Fletcher's residence following his arrest, authorities discovered more than 30 mobile phones and several SIM cards that were used in the execution of the scheme.
"Fletcher created a gateway for thousands of criminals to defraud innocent victims out of millions of pounds through the establishment of iSpoof," said Detective Superintendent Helen Rance. "Meanwhile, he lived a luxurious lifestyle funded by the profits."
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