Atlanta man sentenced to federal prison in connection with a multimillion-dollar international cyber and fraud scheme
ATLANTA - Daniel Kaye has been arraigned on charges of access device fraud and money laundering conspiracy. Kaye’s charges arise from his alleged operation of The Real Deal, a Dark Web market that sold, among other things, hacking tools and stolen login credentials, and his laundering of funds he received from that market.
“While living overseas, this defendant allegedly operated an illegal website that made hacking tools and login credentials available for purchase, including those for U.S. government agencies,” said U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Buchanan. “This case is a timely reminder, during National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, that federal law enforcement will make those accused of breaking U.S. laws face their day in court, regardless of where they reside in the world.”
“This case is an example of our persistent determination to work with our international partners to hold criminals accountable no matter how sophisticated their cyber fraud or their geographic location,” said Keri Farley, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. “Let this indictment be a message that the FBI and our partners place a high priority on the investigation and prosecution of hackers who intrude into our infrastructure and threaten the personal security of our citizens.”
According to U.S. Attorney Buchanan, the charges, and other information presented in court: Kaye allegedly operated The Real Deal, a Dark Web market for illicit items, including stolen account login credentials for U.S. government computers; stolen account login credentials for social media accounts and bank accounts; stolen credit card information; stolen personally identifiable information; illegal drugs; botnets; and computer hacking tools. The market was organized into categories, such as “Exploit Code,” “Counterfeits,” “Drugs,” “Fraud & More, “Government Data,” and “Weapons.” The market allowed vendors to create accounts and list their products. These vendors maintained profile pages offering a rating system where buyers could rank vendors.
The indictment alleges that Kaye listed for sale on The Real Deal login credentials for U.S. government computers belonging to the U.S. Postal Service, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and the U.S. Navy. The indictment further alleges that Kaye, along with an individual (or individuals) known as “thedarkoverlord,” trafficked in stolen social security numbers; and that Kaye possessed 15 or more stolen login credentials for Twitter and LinkedIn. Finally, the indictment alleges that Kaye laundered cryptocurrency he obtained from The Real Deal through Bitmixer.io, a website that offered Bitcoin “mixing” services and, through its “mixing” algorithm, sought to keep its users anonymous, private, and immune to Bitcoin blockchain tracing analysis.
On April 13, 2021, a federal grand jury returned an indictment charging Kaye with five counts of access device fraud for unauthorized solicitation, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1029(a)(6), one count of using and trafficking in unauthorized access devices, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1029(a)(2), two counts of possession of unauthorized and counterfeit access devices, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1029(a)(3), and one count of money laundering conspiracy, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1956(h). Kaye was overseas at the time the indictment was filed and, in September 2022, consented to his extradition from Cyprus to the United States.
Daniel Kaye, also known as “Popopret,” “Bestbuy,” “TheRealDeal,” “Logger,” “David Cohen,” “Marc Chapon,” “UserL0ser,” “Spdrman,” “Dlinch Kravitz,” “Fora Ward,” and “Ibrahim Sahil,” 34, of London, England, was arraigned before U.S. Magistrate Judge Linda T. Walker. Members of the public are reminded that the indictment only contains charges. The defendant is presumed innocent of the charges and it will be the government’s burden to prove the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt at trial.
This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Also the Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs, Cyprus Ministry of Justice and Public Order, Cyprus Police, German Bundeskriminalamt, and United Kingdom National Crime Agency, assisted in this investigation.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Samir Kaushal is prosecuting the case.
October is recognized as National Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Unfortunately, criminals continue to victimize people online by exploiting their personal security, financial safety, and identity. To help victim service providers and allied professionals better serve victims of cybercrime and keep them safer online, the Office for Victims of Crime Training & Technical Assistance Center offers many resources to update the field about cybersecurity and the tools available to serve victims. Please visit their website to learn more: https://www.ovcttac.gov/.
For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016. The Internet address for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is http://www.justice.gov/usao-ndga.