Hundreds of people around the world have been arrested in mass repression against organized crime, thanks to the infiltration of the app used by the police to exchange encrypted messages between offenders, the Central Police said on Tuesday. Australian.
The operation was triggered by police in several countries in Europe, the United States, Australia and New Zealand, who were able to decode, in real time and for three years, thousands of encrypted communications across all types of criminal networks, Australian police said in a statement.
New Zealand police described their operation as “the most sophisticated in the world against organized crime committed by the police to date”.
Massive interception of these messages is possible thanks to the use of the “ANoM” used to communicate with criminals around the world in an encrypted way, but it was actually controlled by the US Federal Police Force, the FBI.
The news, particularly related to assassination plots and drug and arms smuggling, was reported by Australian police who arrested 224 people across the country.
“Hundreds have been arrested” outside Australia, the same source added.
New Zealand police have arrested 35 people, including drug trafficking and money laundering.
The “ANoM” application was installed on mobile phones, which lost any other functionality and was traded on the black market.
This type of phone can only communicate with another phone that has an application. “One offender had to know another offender to get this material,” Australian police said in a statement.
“As the devices spread and their popularity grew among criminals, they believed in the fairness of the use because key figures in organized crime promised its integrity,” he continued.
“These criminal influencers have put the Australian Federal Police in the pockets of hundreds of criminals,” Australian Police Chief Reese Gershaw said in the statement.
“Basically they trust each other by embracing ANOM and communicating with it publicly, without knowing that we are always listening to them,” he said.
The operation was codenamed “Iron Side” in Australia and “Trojan Shield” worldwide.