A hacker network in the Netherlands was unraveled earlier this week, and the main suspect nabbed in Armenia less than a day later.
While a Dutch expert hailed the operation as unique, the Netherlands still placed seventh on a list of countries hardest hit by cyber crime, according to Radio Netherlands Worldwide.
The Armenian suspect allegedly used 143 servers in the Netherlands to infect three million computers around the world, distribute spam and steal passwords to break into bank accounts.
One of the reasons why the Netherlands is a main exporter of malware is related to the country’s hosting 2.2 percent of botnets. The Netherlands is home to some of the biggest hosting providers, which host the servers used by cyber crooks criminals to spread their malware, Radio Netherlands Worldwide reports.
Another problem is that the Dutch police lack the authority to strike back via the Internet and crack down on foreign cyber criminals.
“Cyber crime public prosecutor Lodewijk van Swieten would love to have the authority to do just that, and enable him to hack the hackers,” Fox.IT’s Marketing manager Joost Bijl told Radio Netherlands Worldwide. “However there are legal hurdles to be cleared. Taking the fight to the cyber criminals means attacking a network in another country, and to the best of my knowledge there are as yet no laws that make that possible.“