Belgian and Dutch judicial and law enforcement authorities, supported by the European Cybercrime Centre (EC3) at Europol and Eurojust, have concluded an operation resulting in the arrest of 12 members of an organised crime group and the seizure of EUR 15 000 in cash and important digital evidence in a voice-phishing case.

Earlier this year, following months of close judicial and law enforcement cooperation, Belgium and the Netherlands conducted simultaneous arrests and house searches.

Investigations to identify potential criminal connections in other Member States are ongoing.

Voice-phishing is a relatively new form of cybercrime. In this case, the potential victims in Belgium first received an e-mail, seemingly from a Belgian bank, asking for personal information. In the second phase, the criminals, located in the Netherlands, made direct contact with the potential victims in Belgium by telephone to gain access to private and personal information. The collected information was subsequently used to access bank accounts in Belgium and transfer money. The Belgian victims and banks suffered millions of euros in losses.