ALEXANDRIA, Va. – The Justice Department says that an international investigation has resulted in the shutdown of 36 websites that were trafficking in stolen credit card numbers.
The seizures announced Thursday were part of what the government is calling Operation Wreaking hAVoC. The websites in question are commonly referred to as AVC's or automated vending carts.
A federal magistrate in Alexandria ordered the websites' seizures after the investigation, which included undercover purchases of stolen numbers.
Peter Carr, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia, said it's the first time the federal government has seized websites trafficking in stolen card numbers. The department say law enforcement agencies in the United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, Macedonia, Ukraine, Romania and the Netherlands assisted the FBI in the investigation.