Friday, October 1, 2010
Unlock Network in France Arrested
French authorities have arrested a cyber crime network and arrested nine men allegedly involved in illegal sales of codes used to unlock the phone code. The authorities opened the investigation in 2009 in order to respond to the second largest operator in France, SFR, owned jointly by Vivendi and Vodafone. The parties suspects, including three people charged with, buy the codes from the factory workers and mobile phone shops around 3 euros and sold for 30 Euro each. This criminal action has been going on for 5 years.
"They will face charges including theft and fencing of organized," said police spokesman Philippe Lajeunesse. A brother and sister were arrested in the city of Rennes, where they run a shop selling mobile phones. They are suspected as the mastermind of this illegal activity. Lajeunesse said that six others will be brought before the trial, and other arrests will be made in the future. At least there are 100 telephone code being stolen every day and 30,000 each month code. These codes are sold on a website which has 100,000 clients.
The mobile operators subsidize handsets to attract customers with long-term contracts, will lose customers if the handset lock is opened by using the codes that have been stolen, to then use the phone with other network operators. Police said that the people who sell the codes are mostly people who want to change the operator for six months of their contract. While the other is the receiver who sell the codes to the market for mobile phones stolen in France and other countries.