Australian citizen is arrested for stealing thousands of accounts from Netflix, Spotify and other streaming platforms

Australian authorities ordered an individual to hand over $1.6 million as part of his conviction for stealing login credentials for streaming platforms such as Netflix, Hulu and Spotify. The defendant, in complicity with an individual in the U.S., stole the passwords and then resold them for a minimal price.

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) began an investigation into this unusual activity in May 2018, when the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) spotted a website for generating accounts known as WickedGen. This platform sold login credentials on the aforementioned streaming platforms, which were stolen from users in the U.S. and Australia.

The defendant was responsible for the creation, management and principal investor of WickedGen and other similar platforms. On these platforms there were more than 150,000 registered users, selling around 85,000 illegal subscriptions to streaming platforms.

The individual pleaded guilty to stealing these logins and passwords in 2020, in addition to providing the information about the cryptocurrency addresses and accounts of PayPal where his fraudulent winnings were stored.

Authorities seized more than $1.5 million USD from the defendant, mostly in cryptocurrency. Australian courts determined that the funds will be redistributed by the Department of Home Affairs to support crime prevention, law enforcement and community safety initiatives.

To learn more about information security risks, malware variants, vulnerabilities and information technologies, feel free to access the International Institute of Cyber Security (IICS) websites.