AN ILLEGAL website that provides stolen credentials to criminals has been shut down thanks to help from West Mercia Police.

Officers from the force's Cyber Crime team supported the National Crime Agency and the FBI to take down Genesis Market on Tuesday, April 4.

Nine arrests have been made across West Mercia.

It was the target of the joint operation involving 18 countries and led by the FBI and the Dutch National Police.

The joint operation took place over two days earlier this week (Tuesday 4 April and Wednesday 5 April).

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Genesis Market was a go-to service for criminals seeking to defraud victims, having hosted approximately 80 million credentials and digital fingerprints stolen from over two million people.

As part of the investigation, the NCA identified hundreds of UK-based users of the platform and worked together with policing partners across the country.

This resulted in warrants being executed, arrests and preventative action in coordinated raids by the NCA, Regional Cyber Crime Units and Force Cyber Crime Units.

Detective sergeant Steve Lloyd from West Mercia Police’s Cyber Crime Unit, said: “I am incredibly proud of the role my team played and how they represented West Mercia Police over the last two days.

"I have no doubt that this enforcement has protected the West Mercia public specifically in tacking fraud and preventing further people from becoming victims.”

Members of the public can check whether their data has been compromised and accessed by criminals on Genesis Market by visiting Politie and inputting their email address.

Those who have been affected are encouraged to report this to Action Fraud.

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The NCA has also collaborated with the National Cyber Security Centre and City of London Police to devise five steps for members of the public to follow in order to protect their devices and online accounts. This can be accessed on the NCA website.

Rob Jones, NCA director general NECC and threat leadership, said: “Behind every cyber criminal or fraudster is the technical infrastructure that provides them with the tools to execute their attacks and the means to benefit financially from their offending.”

“Cybercrime is a key enabler of the vast majority of fraud, which is now the single largest crime type in the UK, affecting more people than any other.”