The global black market has the ability to create financial losses for corporations and governments worldwide. Threat intelligence of the illegal trade is provided to help mitigate this risk. Reports and assessments has been collected from various sources such as government agencies, academic reports, media publications and reported data from our readers.

Security officers broke up an organ trafficking ring that was bringing people from Vietnam to China in order to conduct kidney transplant surgeries.

Police in Vietnam found that 8 people sold their kidneys for money, with 2 of them being taken to China in order to obtain the surgery. 5 of the people were siblings.

According to news reports, the amount that the people received for selling their kidney ranged from $2,585 (55 Million Vietnamese Dong) to $5,170.

(More prices of the illegal organ trade.)

Source:  “Vietnam police probe paid kidney ‘donors’ for hint of trafficking ,” Thanh Nien Daily, April 29, 2014.

According to financial regulators and security officers, since the introduction of the Euro in January 1, 2002, there have been over 6 million counterfeit euros and fake banknotes that have been removed from circulation. Intelligence officers estimate that over half of these fake notes were produced in the Italian town of Giugliano.

(More crime in Italy statistics.)

The European Central Bank reported 670,000 counterfeit banknotes were found to be in the money circulation and removed in 2013. The amount of counterfeit money detected represented an annual increase of mover 26 percent.

Criminal justice agencies across the European Union state that the makers of counterfeit notes sells batches in bulk to wholesale distributors for 10 percent of the value of the bill. Thus, if a counterfeit money producer sells a batch of fake bills that have a face value of 500,000 euros, then the producer will receive 50,000 genuine euros for the fakes.

The wholesaler who bought the fakes will the pay money mules to spend the money and get it into the financial system. When paying the mules, the wholesaler also charges 10 percent. The mules prefer to spend the fake bills in locations where there are a lot of people that have many cash transactions. Popular venues to pass the fake notes include Champions League football matches and at Oktoberfest.

(See how Peru’s counterfeiters make counterfeit dollars.)

Source:  Philip Johnson, “The Town That Prints Money: Europe’s Counterfeit Capital,” Newsweek, April 28, 2014.

According to statistics reported by the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau, there were 230,845 cases of fraud record during the 2013/2014 fiscal year in Britain. The figures averages out to over 630 cases of fraud being reported each day.

The number of fraud cases reported was 89 percent higher than the previous fiscal year, when 122,240 cases of fraud were reported.

Security officials state that nearly 70 percent of all fraud cases involves some sort of cyber element.  5 years ago, the cyber element involves roughly 40 percent of all fraud cases.

Pure cyber crime cases, such as hacking or computer virus attacks on companies, increased to 22,315, nearly double the 11,523 attacks recorded in the previous fiscal year. 494 companies reported that there computer servers were breached.

Nearly 6,000 people also reported to the police that their Facebook profiles have been hacked. Security officials state that most of these cases involved id thieves attempting to collect personal data.

Cyber crime costs Britain’s economy up to $45 Billion (£27 Billion ) a  year.

(See all statistics about crime in the UK.)

Source:  Justin Davenport, “Seven out of 10 frauds are now cyber crimes, police chief warns,” London Evening Standard, April 28, 2014.

An Air France executive was arrested was running a prostitution ring in France.

The executive would bring in girls from Brazil into France while claiming that the girls were family members. By claiming that the girls were related to him, the executive was able to fly them to France at the family-member discount rate of $207 (€150).

While in France, the girls were kept at various apartments located near the Louvre and other Paris neighborhoods. The girls would be forced to service up to 5 men a day at a rate of $207 (€150) per client.

In total, security officials state that the man made up to $2.7 Million (€2 Million) a year.

(Additional prostitution statistics.)

Source:  Rory Mulholland, “Air France executive and wife ‘ran £2m prostitution ring through airline’,” Telegraph, April 28, 2014.

Additional prostitution stats and prices available in our ebook:


Security officials in Dubai reported that there were 1,419 cases of cyber crimes reported in the Emirate in 2013.

The number of cyber crime cases has been increasing over the past several years. In 2011, there were 588 cases of electronic crimes reported to police. In 2012, there were 792 cases of cyber crimes.

It was previously reported that up to $626 Million in economic value was lost to the United Arab Emirates due to cyber crime activities each year.

(See the prices of hackers and other online fraud activities.)

Source:  Dana Moukhallati, “Cyber crimes in Dubai nearly double in 2012,” National, April 28, 2014.

(All statistics about crime in the UAE.)

Based on previous intelligence and reports, the average price that a person from Cuba pays to human smugglers to be transported across the Florida Straits to the United States is $10,000.

A United States Federal Security Agent testified that when the person being smuggled out of Cuba is a potential Major League Baseball Player, then the smuggling fee can be up to 25 times higher, or $250,000.  In addition to these fee that must be paid to the smugglers, the baseball player and his family must agree to give up to 20 percent of the initial contract that is signed with a professional baseball team.

According to the Los Angeles Times, there are some current major league players from Cuba who are currently making payments to the smugglers while their families back home are threatened with violence is payment is not received.

Source:  Kevin Baxter and Brian Bennett, “In booming marketplace for Cuban players, Puig’s tale far from unique,” Los Angeles Times, April 26, 2014.

An artifact smuggler was quoted in the media as saying that the ability to smuggle ancient artifacts and antiques from historic sites in Syria has become easier and more rampant since the start of the violent civil conflict.

According to the report, artifact such as vases, silver coins and ceramic figures are all being looted from sties such as the Palmyra. Previously, smugglers had to evade security and intelligence officers in Syria when looting at protected sites. With security forces dealing with the conflict, the professional smugglers and newer amateur looters are able to loot the ancient city.

In an example of the market, one smuggler was offering a ceramic vase from the Idlib Province. Originally, the smuggler offered the vase for $500, but eventually sold it for $150. In another example, smugglers wanted to sell three items for $3,200. They were able to sell a sliver coin for $200.

In general, most of the items are being sold for $300 to $400.

(More information about looting and antique smuggling.)

Source:  Dominique Soguel, “Syrian smugglers enjoy a free-for-all among ancient ruins,” Christian Science Monitor, April 27, 2014.

A report by TorrentFreak stated that an online service is providing customers with the ability to set up a fully working online streaming site that displays pirated movies and television shows.

People who are looking to own their own movie streaming site pay at least $200 to the service. Once payment is complete, the service provides the scripts that automatically adds updated movies and televisions to the site. All the buyer needs is a server to host the website. According to interviews with one buyer, the total time to set up a new streaming site after payment was between 5 to 10 minuets.

The new owner of the site is then able to recoup the original investment by generating revenue from ads that are displayed on the sites.

It was previously reported that online streaming websites and other BitTorrent sites that offer users pirated movies are collectively able to make $227 Million a year from advertising clicks. A small BitTorrent site that has less than one million unique visitors per day can make around $100,000 a year from advertising.

(More earnings from illegal jobs and activities.)

Source:  Andy, “Buy a Fully Loaded Movie and TV Show Piracy Site for Just $200,” Torrent Freak, April 27, 2014.

Criminal justice agencies in Israel are reporting a rise in advanced explosive attacks being carried out by organized crime groups. The groups are conducting assassinations and attacks with the use of explosives and other materials stolen from security forces.

All men in Israel must serve in the military. Thus, organized crime members are well versed in handling explosives. Due to their expertise, many of the hits placed by the syndicates are well made and leave no fingerprints. The bomb makers are able to create targeted explosions and precise detonators that are able to kill their target.

The materials for the bombs are collected from various sources. Some are stolen from military depots, while other are home made. According to reports, there are many grenades for sale on the black market in Israel for $287 (1,000 Israeli Shekels).

(More prices of guns and weapons on the black market.)

In addition to the explosive skills, many crime groups also use their training in surveillance and intelligence collection. A raid on a safe house by police in February 2014 found that the criminals were tracking rivals through the use of advanced cellphone tracking software. The rivals location was being displayed on high-resolution monitors, with additional screens dedicated to street level surveillance conducted by gang members.

In 2013, police forces arrested about 500 members of major Israeli organized crime groups.

Source:  Jeff Moskowitz, “Israel’s Nightmare: Mobsters Trained by Country’s Own Military,” NBC News, April 24, 2014.

Media reports from Japan state that a woman working at a hostess club in the high-end entertainment city of Ginza, Japan, can make over $19,500 (2 Million Japanese Yen) a month. A top hostess who is able to bring in numerous high- spending customers is able to earn up to $97,000 (10 Million Yen) a month in bonuses.

There are about 2,000 bars and clubs in the Ginza district.

Many of the companies that operate hostess bars in Japan have been accused by security officials of tax evasion activities. Financial authorities in April 2014 brought charges to 5 clubs that were accused of not paying $1.7 Million (175 Million Yen) in income tax.

(Earnings of various jobs on the black market.)

Source:  Yomimuri Shimbun, “Ginza club ‘mama’ suspected of ¥175 mil. tax evasion,” Japan News, April 25, 2014.