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Judge Rules No Jail Time for WannaCry 'Killer' Marcus Hutchins, a.k.a. MalwareTech

Judge Rules No Jail Time for WannaCry 'Killer' Marcus Hutchins, a.k.a. MalwareTech

July 26, 2019Swati Khandelwal
Marcus Hutchins, better known as MalwareTech, has been sentenced to "time served" and one year of supervised release for developing and selling the Kronos banking malware. Yes, Hutchins will not go to prison, United States District Judge J.P. Stadtmueller ruled today in Milwaukee County Court, after describing his good work as "too many positives on the other side of the ledger." In response to today’s sentencing Hutchins said : "Sentenced to time served! Incredibly thankful for the understanding and leniency of the judge, the wonderful character letter you all sent, and everyone who helped me through the past two years, both financially and emotionally." Marcus Hutchins, 25, is the same British malware analyst who gained notoriety in cybersecurity circles for "accidentally" helping to stop the WannaCry ransomware outbreak in 2017 that wreaked havoc in over 150 countries and brought down companies across all industries. Hutchins was a
Silk Road Admin Sentenced to 78 Months in Prison On Drug Trafficking Charges

Silk Road Admin Sentenced to 78 Months in Prison On Drug Trafficking Charges

July 26, 2019Swati Khandelwal
An Irish national has been jailed for six-and-a-half years for his role as one of the administrators and forum moderators who helped run now-defunct dark web marketplace " Silk Road ." Gary Davis , 31, of Wicklow, Ireland, was known as 'Libertas' on the Silk Road website, then-largest underground black marketplace on the Internet used by thousands of people to buy and sell drugs and other illegal goods and services. Silk Road site administrators were responsible for, among other things, monitoring user activity on the underground website for any problem, responding to customer service inquiries, and resolving any dispute between buyers and vendors. Davis was indicted by U.S. federal prosecutors in 2013 when authorities shut down the Silk Road website and arrested its founder Ross William Ulbricht , who was sentenced to life in prison in 2015 after being convicted on multiple counts related to the black marketplace. "During its operation from 2011 un
DDoS Attacker Who Ruined Gamers' Christmas Gets 27 Months in Prison

DDoS Attacker Who Ruined Gamers' Christmas Gets 27 Months in Prison

July 04, 2019Wang Wei
A 23-year-old hacker from Utah who launched a series of DDoS attacks against multiple online services, websites, and online gaming companies between December 2013 and January 2014 has been sentenced to 27 months in prison. Austin Thompson, a.k.a. "DerpTroll," pledged guilty back in November 2018 after he admitted to being a part of DerpTrolling , a hacker group that was behind DDoS attacks against several major online gaming platforms including Electronic Arts' Origin service, Sony PlayStation network, and Valve Software's Steam during Christmas. "Thompson typically used the Twitter account @DerpTrolling to announce that an attack was imminent and then posted "scalps" (screenshots or other photos showing that victims' servers had been taken down) after the attack," the DoJ says. According to a U.S. Department of Justice press release published Wednesday, Thompson's actions caused the victim companies at least $95,000 in damages. T
GandCrab Ransomware Decryption Tool [All Versions] — Recover Files for Free

GandCrab Ransomware Decryption Tool [All Versions] — Recover Files for Free

June 18, 2019Mohit Kumar
Cybersecurity researchers have released an updated version of GandCrab ransomware decryption tool that could allow millions of affected users to unlock their encrypted files for free without paying a ransom to the cybercriminals. GandCrab is one of the most prolific families of ransomware to date that has infected over 1.5 million computers since it first emerged in January 2018. Created by BitDefender, the new GandCrab decryption tool [ download ] can now unlock files encrypted by the latest versions of the ransomware, from 5.0 to 5.2, as well as for the older GandCrab ransomware versions. As part of the " No More Ransom " Project, BitDefender works in partnership with the FBI, Europol, London Police, and several other law enforcement agencies across the globe to help ransomware affected users. The cybersecurity company in recent months released ransomware removal tools for some older GandCrab versions that helped nearly 30,000 victims recover their data for free,
U.S. Charges Chinese Hacker For 2015 Anthem Data Breach

U.S. Charges Chinese Hacker For 2015 Anthem Data Breach

May 09, 2019Mohit Kumar
The United States Justice Department today announced charges against a Chinese hacker and his hacking team member for their alleged role in the 2015 massive data breach at health insurance giant Anthem and three other unnamed American companies. Fujie Wang (王 福 杰) and another hacker named John Doe with three different aliases—Deniel Jack, Kim Young, and Zhou Zhihong—are charged with four counts of conspiracy to commit fraud, wire fraud, and damage to a protected computer, according to an indictment [ pdf ] unsealed today in federal court in Indianapolis. In 2015, the hackers managed to breach Anthem, the country's second-largest health insurance company and stole personal information of over 80 Millions of its customers, including their Social Security Numbers, birthdates, email addresses, residential addresses, medical identification numbers, employment information, and income data. The incident marked as one of the worst data breaches in history, with the company paying
WikiLeaks' Julian Assange Sentenced to 50 Weeks in UK Jail

WikiLeaks' Julian Assange Sentenced to 50 Weeks in UK Jail

May 01, 2019Mohit Kumar
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been sentenced to 50 weeks—for almost a year—in prison by a London court for breaching his bail conditions in 2012 and taking refuge in the Ecuadorian embassy for nearly 7 years. The 47-year-old Assange was arrested last month by London's Metropolitan Police Service after the Ecuadorian government suddenly withdrew his political asylum . Within hours of his arrest, Assange was convicted at Westminster Magistrates' Court of skipping bail in June 2012 after an extradition order to Sweden over claims of sexual assault and rape allegations made by two women. Although Sweden dropped its preliminary investigation into the rape accusation against Julian Assange in 2017, Assange chose not to leave the Ecuadorian Embassy due to fears of extradition to the United States. In the Southwark Crown Court today Judge Deborah Taylor gave Assange a sentence close to the maximum of a year in custody, saying it was hard to "envisage a more ser
Europol Now Going After People Who Bought DDoS-for-Hire Services

Europol Now Going After People Who Bought DDoS-for-Hire Services

January 29, 2019Swati Khandelwal
If you were a buyer of any online DDoS-for-hire service, you might be in trouble. After taking down and arresting the operators of the world's biggest DDoS-for-hire service last year, the authorities are now in hunt for customers who bought the service that helped cyber criminals launch millions of attacks against several banks, government institutions, and gaming industry. Europol has announced that British police are conducting a number of live operations worldwide to track down the users of the infamous Webstresser.org service that the authorities dismantled in April 2018. Launched in 2015, Webstresser let its customers rent the service for about £10 to launch Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks against their targets with little to no technical knowledge, which resulted in more than 4 million DDoS attacks. According to the Europol announcement published on Monday, the agency gained access to the accounts of over 151,000 registered Webstresser users last yea
Real Identity of Hacker Who Sold LinkedIn, Dropbox Databases Revealed

Real Identity of Hacker Who Sold LinkedIn, Dropbox Databases Revealed

November 21, 2018Swati Khandelwal
The real identity of Tessa88—the notorious hacker tied to several high-profile cyber attacks including the LinkedIn , DropBox and MySpace mega breaches—has been revealed as Maksim Vladimirovich Donakov (Максим Владимирович Донаков), a resident of Penza, Russian Federation. In early 2016, a hacker with pseudonym Tessa88 emerged online offering stolen databases from some of the biggest social media websites in the world, including LinkedIn, MySpace, VKontakte (vk.com), Dropbox, Rambler , and Twitter , for sale in various underground hacking forums. The stolen data, taken years ago from several social media sites, included more than half a billion username and password combinations, which were then used in phishing, account takeover, and other cyber attacks. Though Tessa88's profile was active for a few months between February and May 2016, the OPSEC analysis revealed that the same person was involved in various cybercriminal activities since as early as 2012 under different
Two TalkTalk hackers jailed for 2015 data breach that cost it £77 million

Two TalkTalk hackers jailed for 2015 data breach that cost it £77 million

November 20, 2018Swati Khandelwal
Two hackers have been sent to prison for their roles in hacking TalkTalk , one of the biggest UK-based telecommunications company, in 2015 and stealing personal information, banking, and credit card details belonging to more than 156,000 customers. Matthew Hanley, 23, and Connor Allsopp, 21, both from Tamworth in Staffordshire, were sentenced Monday to 12 months and 8 months in prison, respectively, after they admitted charges relating to the massive breach that cost TalkTalk £77 million in losses. The total cost also included the massive £400,000 fine imposed by the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) on TalkTalk for failings to implement the most basic security measures in order to prevent the hack from happening. At the Old Bailey, the judge Anuja Dhir described Hanley as a "dedicated hacker" and sentenced him to 12 months in prison; whereas, Allsopp gets 8-months prison for his lesser role in the cyber attack. The Judge also said that it was a tragedy
Accused CIA Leaker Faces New Charges of Leaking Information From Prison

Accused CIA Leaker Faces New Charges of Leaking Information From Prison

November 02, 2018Swati Khandelwal
Joshua Adam Schulte , a 30-year-old former CIA computer programmer who was indicted over four months ago  for masterminding the largest leak of classified information in the agency's history, has now been issued three new charges. The news comes just hours after Schulte wrote a letter to the federal judge presiding over his case, accusing officials at Manhattan Metropolitan Correctional Center of interfering with his case pleading and subjecting him to "cruel and unusual punishment" in pre-trial detention. "The shit-filled showers where you leave dirtier than when you entered; the flooding of the tiers and cages with ice-cold water; the constant blast of cold air as we are exposed to extreme cold without blankets or long-sleeve shirts; the uncontrollable lights that are always on as we are sleep deprived...No human being should ever have to experience this torture," Schulte wrote. Schulte, who once designed hacking tools and malware for both the CIA and
Mirai Botnet Creators Helping FBI Fight Cybercrime to Stay Out of Jail

Mirai Botnet Creators Helping FBI Fight Cybercrime to Stay Out of Jail

September 19, 2018Mohit Kumar
Three young hackers who were sentenced late last year for creating and spreading the notorious Mirai botnet are now helping the FBI to investigate other "complex" cybercrime cases in return to avoid their lengthy prison terms. Paras Jha, 21 from New Jersey, Josiah White, 20 from Washington, and Dalton Norman, 21 from Louisiana, plead guilty in December 2017 to multiple charges for their role in creating and hijacking hundreds of thousands IoT devices to make them part of a notorious botnet network dubbed Mirai . Mirai malware scanned for insecure routers, cameras, DVRs, and other Internet of Things (IoT) devices which were using their default passwords and then made them part of a botnet network . The trio developed the Mirai botnet to attack rival Minecraft video gaming hosts, but after realizing that their invention was powerful enough to launch record-breaking DDoS attacks against targets like OVH hosting website, they released the source code of Mirai . The
U.S. Charges North Korean Spy Over WannaCry and Sony Pictures Hack

U.S. Charges North Korean Spy Over WannaCry and Sony Pictures Hack

September 06, 2018Swati Khandelwal
The U.S. Department of Justice announces criminal charges against a North Korean government spy in connection with the 2017 global WannaCry ransomware attack and the 2014 Sony Pictures Entertainment hack . According to multiple government officials cited by the NY Times who are familiar with the indictment, the charges would be brought against Park Jin Hyok , who works for North Korean military intelligence agency Reconnaissance General Bureau (RGB). The November 2014 Sony Pictures Entertainment hack was done in retaliation for the studio's production of a comedic film, " The Interview ," a comedy about two journalists who are recruited by the CIA to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. In June 2014, the Pyongyang government also denounced the film as "undisguised sponsoring of terrorism, as well as an Act of War" in a letter to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. The Sony Pictures hack was devastating to the company and exposed over 200
3 Carbanak (FIN7) Hackers Charged With Stealing 15 Million Credit Cards

3 Carbanak (FIN7) Hackers Charged With Stealing 15 Million Credit Cards

August 02, 2018Swati Khandelwal
Three members of one of the world's largest cybercrime organizations that stole over a billion euros from banks across the world over the last five years have been indicted and charged with 26 felony counts, the Justice Department announced on Wednesday. The three suspects are believed to be members of the organized Russian cybercrime group known as FIN7 , the hackers group behind Carbanak and Cobalt malware and were arrested last year in Europe between January and June. The suspects—Dmytro Fedorov, 44, Fedir Hladyr, 33, and Andrii Kopakov, 30—are all from Ukraine and accused of targeting 120 companies based in the United States, as well as U.S. individuals. The victims include Chipotle Mexican Grill, Jason's Deli, Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, Sonic Drive-in, Taco John's, Chili's, Arby's, and Emerald Queen Hotel and Casino in Washington state. Carbanak (FIN7) Group Charged for Stealing 15 Million Credit Cards According to the press release published
Man Who Hacked Jail Systems to Release His Friend Early Gets 7-Years in Prison

Man Who Hacked Jail Systems to Release His Friend Early Gets 7-Years in Prison

May 01, 2018Mohit Kumar
Remember a young hacker who hacked jail systems in an attempt to release his prison inmate early? Well, that hacker will now be joining his inmate behind bars. Konrads Voits of Ypsilanti, Michigan, has been sentenced to seven years and three months in prison for attempting to hack the Washtenaw County Jail computer system and modifying prison records to get his friend released early. Besides spending 87 months in prison, Voits has also been ordered to pay $235,488 in fine to Washtenaw County for the cost accrued in investigating and cleaning up the infiltration that resulted in the compromise of personal information of around 1,600 employees, the US Justice Department announced last week. Between January 24th, 2017 and March 10th, 2017, Voits successfully tricked IT staff at Washtenaw County Jail into visiting a phony website at "ewashtenavv.org," which mimics the official URL, "ewashtenaw.org." The malicious website then installed malware on the IT
Suspected 'Big Bitcoin Heist' Mastermind Fled to Sweden On Icelandic PM's Plane

Suspected 'Big Bitcoin Heist' Mastermind Fled to Sweden On Icelandic PM's Plane

April 18, 2018Swati Khandelwal
Remember the " Big bitcoin heist " we reported last month when a group of thieves stole around 600 powerful bitcoin mining devices from Icelandic data centers? Icelandic Police had arrested 11 suspects as part of the investigation, one of which has escaped from prison and fled to Sweden on a passenger plane reportedly also carrying the Icelandic prime minister Katrin Jakobsdottir. Sindri Thor Stefansson , who is suspected of masterminding the whole theft of almost $2 million worth of cryptocurrency-mining equipment, traveled under a passport of someone else but identified through surveillance footage. Stefansson had recently been transferred to a low-security Sogn prison, located in rural southern Iceland (just 59 miles away from Iceland's international airport in Keflavik), from where he escaped through a window early Tuesday and boarded the flight to Sweden. Prime minister Jakobsdottir was on her way to Sweden to take part in India-Nordic Summit and meet Indi
Uber Paid 20-Year-Old Florida Hacker $100,000 to Keep Data Breach Secret

Uber Paid 20-Year-Old Florida Hacker $100,000 to Keep Data Breach Secret

December 07, 2017Swati Khandelwal
Last year, Uber received an email from an anonymous person demanding money in exchange for the stolen user database. It turns out that a 20-year-old Florida man, with the help of another, breached Uber's system last year and was paid a huge amount by the company to destroy the data and keep the incident secret. Just last week, Uber announced that a massive data breach in October 2016 exposed personal data of 57 million customers and drivers and that it paid two hackers $100,000 in ransom to destroy the information. However, the ride-hailing company did not disclose identities or any information about the hackers or how it paid them. Now, two unknown sources familiar with the incident have told Reuters that Uber paid a Florida man through HackerOne platform, a service that helps companies to host their bug bounty and vulnerability disclosure program. So far, the identity of the Florida man was unable to be obtained or another person who helped him carry out the hack.
After 27-Year Sentence, Russian Hacker Faces Another 14 Years in Prison

After 27-Year Sentence, Russian Hacker Faces Another 14 Years in Prison

December 01, 2017Swati Khandelwal
Roman Valerevich Seleznev , the son of a prominent Russian lawmaker who's already facing a 27-year prison sentence in the United States, has been handed another 14-year prison sentence for his role in an "organized cybercrime ring" that caused $59 Million in damages across the US. In April this year, Seleznev, the 33-year-old son of a Russian Parliament member of the nationalist Liberal Democratic Party (LDPR), was sentenced to 27 years in prison for payment card fraud, causing nearly $170 million in damages to small business and financial institutions in the US. The sentence was so far the longest sentence ever imposed in the United States for a hacking-related case. Now, after pleading guilty in two criminal cases stemming from a hacking probe in September, Seleznev Thursday  received another 14-year prison sentence for racketeering in Nevada and another 14 years for conspiracy to commit bank fraud charges in Georgia. The sentences will run concurrently to
U.S. Charges Three Chinese Hackers for Hacking Siemens, Trimble & Moody

U.S. Charges Three Chinese Hackers for Hacking Siemens, Trimble & Moody

November 28, 2017Wang Wei
The United States Justice Department has charged three Chinese nationals for allegedly hacking Moody's Analytics economist, German electronics manufacturer Siemens, and GPS maker Trimble, and stealing gigabytes of sensitive data and trade secrets. According to an indictment unsealed Monday in federal court in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the three men worked for a Chinese cybersecurity company, Guangzhou Bo Yu Information Technology Company Limited ( Boyusec ), previously linked to China's Ministry of State Security. Earlier this year, security researchers also linked Boyusec to one of the active Chinese government-sponsored espionage groups, called Advanced Persistent Threat 3 (or APT3 ), which is also known as Gothic Panda, UPS Team, Buckeye, and TG-0110. In 2013, APT3 allegedly stole the blueprints for ASIO's new Canberra building using a piece of malware that was uploaded to an ASIO employee's laptop. According to the indictment, the three Chinese nationals
Dark-Web Drug Dealer Arrested After He Travelled US for World Beard Championships

Dark-Web Drug Dealer Arrested After He Travelled US for World Beard Championships

September 28, 2017Unknown
United States authorities arrested suspected dark web drug kingpin late last month while he was travelling from his base in France to the United States of America for this year’s annual World Beard and Mustache Championships. Gal Vallerius, a 38-year-old French national, was travelling to Austin, Texas, for the competition but was caught by U.S. authorities on August 31 upon landing at Atlanta International Airport on a distribution complaint filed in Miami federal court, The Miami Herald reported Tuesday. Authorities confirmed Vallerius' identity to the online moniker " OxyMonster ," which was previously used to sell drugs on an illegal underground dark web marketplace called Dream Market by searching his laptop that the brown-beard contestant carried with him. Alleged Moderator/Admin Of Dark-Web Dream Market According to Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) affidavit filed in September, Vallerius was an administrator, senior moderator and vendor on Dream
Hacker Who Hacked US Spy Chief, FBI & CIA Director Gets 5-Year in Prison

Hacker Who Hacked US Spy Chief, FBI & CIA Director Gets 5-Year in Prison

September 09, 2017Wang Wei
Remember " Crackas With Attitude "? The hacking group behind a series of embarrassing hacks that targeted personal email accounts of senior officials at the FBI, the CIA, and the White House, among other United States federal agencies in 2015. A member of Crackas With Attitude , who was arrested last year in September, has now been sentenced to five years in federal prison. Justin Liverman, a 25-year-old man from Morehead City, who was known under the online alias "D3F4ULT," was arrested last year along with another member of the group—Andrew Otto Boggs, 23, of North Wilkesboro, who allegedly used the handle "INCURSIO." The duo hacked into multiple government organizations between October 2015 and February 2016. Boggs was sentenced to two years in prison on June 30, 2017, for his role. Liverman pleaded guilty on January 6 this year to conspiracy to hack U.S. government computers and accounts and was sentenced to 5 years in prison on Friday.
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