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FBI

It's almost too convenient: as the USA tries to find support for its push against Iran, the USA has managed to find two men it says were behind major ransomware attacks ranging from 2015 until September 2018. They are Iranian.

Even more bizarre is that some nit at the FBI thinks that a US assistant Attorney General is being original, perhaps even clever, by calling ransomware attacks "21st Century Blackmail." There are some who will be delighted at the news: US President Trump and his pro-Israeli groups have been angling for any persuasion they can to encourage action against Iran by other countries, almost all of which do not line up with the USA. Others will stand back and say "Really?"

CoNet Section: 

Last week, the USA's FBI "unsealed" an indictment against a North Korean who they say was involved in the hacking organisation "Lazarus" which has been responsible for, amongst other things, the WannaCry virus that brought government, corporate and personal computers running Microsoft Windows software, or Linux machines running Windows emulation software, to their knees.

CoNet Section: 

Case Summary: 

It might seem an unlikely financial crime but in effect that's what it was: a scheme to get free sex from prostitutes by means of fraud. Prosecutors stopped short of charging him with rape (although his actions arguably negated the consent the women gave) but did charge him with obtaining sex by coercion. But that was only one of his charges.

Type of conduct: 
Other financial crime

Editorial Staff

How small is a country? We've seen, over the years, a number of what World Money Laundering Report calls "invented jurisdictions" but can one person be a country, even a country within a country? The so-called "sovereign citizens" movement in the USA says so and the authorities and the courts have been battling against the concept for years. Here's the current state of play.

In 2016, the USA's Federal Bureau of Investigations, issued a statement in Manila: a surge in cases of trafficking of children from the Philippines, and within the Philippines, for the purposes of sexual exploitation by Americans was now a focus of the long-running Operation Cross Country. For the first time, the team had operatedm in conjunction with local law enforcement agencies, its campaign outside US borders in Cambodia, Thailand and the Philippines. In four days, 82 minors were rescued and 239 traffickers and associates were arrested. See our 2012 story

Sometimes they robbed and sometimes they snatched. But they did identify and contact their targets through on-line advertising site "craigslist.com." Then they made an offer that any normal person would think was too good to be true. One has to feel sorry for victims of crime but sometimes one also has to point out that they were just a bit too stupid or greedy. Here's a lesson in why people should be cautious.

Editorial Staff

Three weeks ago, three young recruits from the FBI's secretive high tech hacking unit sat in their bunker (it's a room above a dry-cleaner's in a side street in Falls Church but don't tell them we know) and pondered the issue of how to break into an iPhone. The FBI has a near-unlimited stock of the phones that they routinely confiscate from criminals but which don't qualify as evidence. And with each of them holding handfuls of the phones, they went to work and, much to the annoyance of the "establishment" that wanted to force Apple to give them access, these three tykes found access. Here's how they did it. Their names have been changed to protect the joke.

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Only a few days ago, the internet was abuzz with news that John McAfee had taken to Russian TV to explain the ease with which the FBI could break into a phone (or any other device) they wanted. Now he's saying it was all a hoax.

CoNet Section: 

This might just be the most subversive interview ever given on TV. For sure, it's the video the FBI, DoJ and Manhattan DA don't want you to see. But more than that: for all phone and computer users, it's a massive wake-up call. Good morning, John MacAfee, and thank you. We think.

CoNet Section: 

 


 

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