Britain’s security service said it blocked more than a million cases of credit card fraud last year.
The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), a division of spy agency GCHQ, said its operation Haulster stopped debit and credit cards being abused by criminals.
The NCSC said it intercepted criminal groups using illegal marketplaces in cyberspace to buy and sell personal information and card details.
It said its Haulster team gathered stolen credit cards and repatriated them to banks, often before they are ever used for crime. Card issuers are then able to block cards to protect both financial institutions and the public.
But the anti-crime body said its Haulster team were successfully able to disrupt Magento hackers.
The NCSC said its Haulster operation “automatically flagged fraudulent intention against more than one million stolen credit cards, as a result protecting hundreds of thousands of people from financial loss”.
The crime-fight agency also said that it defended the UK from 658 cyber-attacks from hostile states between last September and August this year.
‘Hostile state actors’
NCSC chief executive Ciaran Martin said: “A significant proportion of our work has continued to take the form of defending against hostile state actors.”
He added: “Russia, China, Iran and North Korea continue to pose strategic national security threats to the UK.
“The most immediate threats to UK citizens come from large-scale security global cyber-crime.”
The NCSC was set up in 2015 as part of a £1.9bn cyber-security strategy.
The government, academics, service providers, health and transport firms are the bodies that most regularly call on the agency for support.