Florida minor arrested in Twitter bitcoin hack

Reuters  Pawel Kopczynski A magnifying glass is held in front of a computer screen in this

Reuters Pawel Kopczynski A magnifying glass is held in front of a computer screen in this

A fifth hacker who went by the handle "lol" and said he lived on the West Coast, spoke to the Times right after the hack, seemingly trying to clear his name - and saying he'd only participated in the brokering of a few Twitter handles early in the day, before Kirk began tweeting from accounts belonging to Kanye West, Barack Obama, Elon Musk and others.

Twitter just released an update on the massive hack that prompted the Great Blue Tick Silence of 2020, letting us know exactly how many accounts were actually impacted.

Friday morning, the IRS, FBI, US Secret Service, and Florida law enforcement descended on a 17-years-old Tampa, Florida resident, and placed him under arrest, according to an announcement from the Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren's office.

Mason Sheppard, a 19-year-old from Bogner Regis, Britain who used the alias Chaewon, was charged with wire fraud and money laundering while Orlando-based Nima Fazeli, 22, nicknamed Rolex, was accused of aiding and abetting the crimes, according to a Justice Department statement.

The culprit behind a massive Twitter hack on July 15 may have been caught, as a 17-year-old Florida male has been arrested and met with 30 felony charges by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, who have accused him of being the "mastermind" behind the scheme. He will be charged as an adult. Spear phishing is a technique in which hackers trick victims into believing that they're someone they're not in order to gain access to personal information, in the case of the Twitter hack it was access to account management tools. It also mentioned that the attackers accessed Direct Message inboxes of at least 36 accounts, whereas only eight accounts' information was downloaded using the "Your Twitter Data" archive tool.

The criminal complaints says the Twitter attack consisted of a combination of technical breaches and social engineering.

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As a cryptocurrency, Bitcoin is hard to track and recover if stolen in a scam.

Twitter said that not every employee targeted by the phishing had the authorization the attackers were looking for, but their credentials opened the door for them to figure out which additional employees they did need to target.

"Clark hacked into the Twitter accounts of famous people and celebrities, but they were not the primary victims. This "Bit-Con" was created to steal money from regular Americans from all over the country, including here in Florida", read the press release.

He added: "Criminal conduct over the Internet may feel stealthy to the people who perpetrate it, but there is nothing stealthy about it".

As part of its incident response, Twitter did briefly lock down any accounts that had attempted a password change during the past 30 days, the @TwitterSupport team tweeted.

Last week, Reuters reported that over 1,000 Twitter employees and contractors had access to internal systems with the power to initiate account takeovers. Once the attackers got those credentials, they were able to use Twitter's account support tools to gain access to user accounts.

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