Admin of $19M marketplace that sold social security numbers gets 8 years in jail

Admin of $19M marketplace that sold social security numbers gets 8 years in jail

November 30, 2023 at 01:33PM

Vitalii Chychasov was sentenced to eight years in prison and ordered to forfeit $5 million for operating an online marketplace that sold the personal data of 24 million Americans. Captured in Hungary in March 2022, he was extradited to the U.S., where his SSNDOB Marketplace had been active since 2013, generating over $19 million in sales. Despite the site’s shutdown, copycat sites persist.

**Meeting Takeaways:**

1. **Sentencing Details:**
– Vitalii Chychasov, a 37-year-old Ukrainian national, has been sentenced to an 8-year prison term.
– He pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit access device fraud and trafficking in unauthorized access devices.
– Chychasov will forfeit $5 million in assets derived from the fraud, as well as control over several marketplace domains.

2. **Arrest and Extradition:**
– Chychasov was arrested in Hungary in March 2022.
– Extradited to the U.S. in July 2022, a month after the marketplace he operated was shut down.

3. **SSNDOB Marketplace Details:**
– Sold personal data of approximately 24 million U.S. citizens.
– Marketplace operated since at least 2013, initially from domain, later over domains such as,,, and
– Offered various personal records for sale, with prices ranging from $0.50 to $15 depending on the type of data.
– Generated over $19 million in sales throughout its operation.

4. **Investigative Details:**
– Brian Krebs led the investigation, indicating the marketplace accessed data from US data aggregators like Lexis-Nexis, Dun & Bradstreet, and Kroll Background America.
– Personal data was used by criminals for various types of fraud, including tax, loan, and credit card fraud.

5. **Marketplace Administration and Operation:**
– Marketplace admins advertised on dark web forums, provided customer support, and monitored site activities.
– Administrators used techniques to maintain anonymity and evade detection, such as using servers in various countries and requiring digital payments.

6. **Impact of the SSNDOB Marketplace:**
– Identity theft from SSNDOB significantly affected victims’ emotional and financial health.
– The operation’s disruption helped to protect the personal information of millions of Americans.

7. **SSNDOB Closure and Aftermath:**
– SSNDOB was shut down by U.S., Latvian, and Cypriot authorities.
– Following the closure, a number of apparent copycat sites have emerged, though their legitimacy and association with Chychasov’s operations are unconfirmed by the Justice Department.

8. **Legal and Law Enforcement Statements:**
– The U.S. Attorney’s Office and the IRS-CI’s Special Agent emphasized the severe impact of identity theft and the importance of dismantling such criminal enterprises to protect citizens’ personal information.

Full Article