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Russian man pleads guilty to running StubHub hack attack

By | Published on Wednesday 22 June 2016


A Russian man faces four to twelve years in prison after pleading guilty to a ticketing scam which involved stealing the credit card information of StubHub customers, using it to buy tickets to in-demand events, and then selling them on the secondary market. What a bastard, giving ticket touts a bad name.

Vadim Polyakov led a scam that saw about 1000 StubHub accounts hacked, with the card info nabbed used to acquire in the region of 3500 tickets, which in turn sold for at least $1.6 million. According to Pollstar, StubHub became aware of the hack after complaints from customers and reported the matter to the US authorities before refunding monies to affected account holders.

US investigators identified Polyakov as one of the men leading the fraudulent venture, and managed to have him arrested while he was holidaying in Spain in 2014. He was then successfully extradited last year. Nine others have been linked to the scam, not all of whom have as yet been arrested, while those who have, other than Polyakov, have so far pleaded not guilty.

The Americans secured Polyakov’s extradition in face of objections from the Russian government. Nevertheless, prosecutors were keen to stress how this case demonstrates that those committing online fraud against Americans from outside the US jurisdiction can still be brought to justice.

According to the New York Daily News, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr said: “Many foreign cybercriminals believe they can operate overseas with total impunity, but this case proves they can be held criminally responsible for their actions, which can have devastating consequences on thousands of victims at a time”.