Friday morning, the IRS, FBI, US Secret Service, and Florida regulation enforcement descended on a 17-years-old Tampa, Florida resident, and positioned him beneath arrest, in keeping with an announcement from the Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren’s workplace.
Authorities declare the person is the “mastermind” behind probably the most colossal privateness and safety breach within the historical past of Twitter — the identical one which took over accounts of Elon Musk, Bill Gates, President Barack Obama, Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, and plenty of extra to hold out a large bitcoin rip-off.
Florida teen arrested, thought-about ‘mastermind’ behind Twitter hack
As of writing, the teenager is in jail and is being charged with greater than 30 felonies, together with communications fraud, identification theft, organized fraud, and hacking, in keeping with Warren’s not too long ago broadcasted news conference.
It’s not but clear whether or not the 17-year-old is suspected to have accomplices. “I can’t comment on whether he worked alone,” Warren mentioned. The younger man was arrested in his condo the place he lives alone, mentioned authorities, reports The Verge.
UPDATE July 31, 3:25 PM EDT: Florida teen hacker charged as grownup
The Florida teen, now in custody, is being charged as an grownup, and the following press convention made it clear that in gentle of how dangerous the hack might have been — not merely charging based mostly on the greater than $100,000 in bitcoin the teenager is alleged to have scammed from unwitting Twitter customers.
“This could have had a massive, massive amount of money stolen from people, it could have destabilized financial markets within America and across the globe; because he had access to powerful politicians’ Twitter accounts, he could have undermined politics as well as international diplomacy,” Warren mentioned.
“This is not a game […] these are serious crimes with serious consequences, and if you think you can rip people off online and get away with it, you’ll be in for a rude awakening, a rude awakening that comes in the form of a 6:00 AM knock on your door from federal agents,” he mentioned in a later assertion.
We respect the swift actions of regulation enforcement on this investigation and can proceed to cooperate because the case progresses. For our half, we’re centered on being clear and offering updates frequently.
For the newest, see right here 👇 https://t.co/kHty8TXaly
— Twitter Comms (@TwitterComms) July 31, 2020
UPDATE July 31, 3:45 PM EDT: Florida teen taken ‘with out incident’
Sources say the teenager was “taken into custody without any incident.” His preliminary court docket look could occur tomorrow morning, mentioned Warren.
Twitter launched an announcement on the arrest: “We appreciate the swift actions of law enforcement in this investigation and will continue to cooperate as the case progresses. For our part, we are focused on being transparent and providing updates regularly,” learn the tweet.
UPDATE July 31, 4:00 PM EDT: ‘Bit-Con’ focused ‘common Americans’
The colossal hack of Twitter was referred to as a “Bit-Con” within the Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office press launch, which added that “[t]hese crimes were perpetrated using the names of famous people and celebrities, but they’re not the primary victims here. This ‘Bit-Con’ was designed to steal money from regular Americans from all over the country, including here in Florida,” learn the press launch.
However, as Gen-Z laptop programmers be taught to code a lot earlier of their lives than individuals of earlier generations, one query value asking is: will this set priority as a heavy deterrent to future hacks, or is that this solely a preview of our collective digital future?