Man arrested for Bitcoin rip-off by Biden, Obama and Musk for Twitter hack

Rafael Henrique | LightRakete | Getty Photos

A Briton was found in Spain on Wednesday in reference to the 2020 hack of Apple’s Twitter accounts, President Joe Biden, former President Barack Obama, Tesla CEO Elon Musk, Warren Buffett, Microsoft founder Invoice Gates and greater than 100 others arrested for dishonest on their Bitcoin followers, the Justice Division stated.

The defendant Joseph O’Connor was arrested in Estepona on the request of the US authorities by the Spanish Nationwide Police, which at the moment are requesting his extradition.

O’Connor, 22, is charged in a felony grievance in California federal court docket on prices associated to illegally compromising greater than 130 Twitter accounts within the July 15, 2020 hack.

Three different individuals had beforehand been charged in reference to the hack, together with a then 17-year-old in Florida who was the alleged “mastermind” of the assault. A prosecutor stated final yr that the fraud introduced in additional than $ 100,000 price of bitcoin.

O’Connor can be accused of cyberstalking and breaking into TikTok and Snapchat accounts as a teenage sufferer.

Victims of the Twitter account additionally included Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, actuality TV celebrity Kim Kardashian, former New York Metropolis Mayor Mike Bloomberg, musicians Kanye West and Wiz Khalifa, the Money App company account and the company account of Above. The Bitcoin-related tweet was Apple’s very first tweet, even if the account had served adverts prior to now.

Through the hacks, messages had been posted by the accounts saying “I am giving again to my neighborhood” or some variation.

The message requested followers of the accounts to ship the cryptocurrency bitcoin to an handle and stated the followers would then get again double the quantity despatched.

Rachel Tobac, CEO of cybersecurity firm SocialProof Safety, informed NBC Information on the time that the assault was in all probability the most important assault Twitter has ever seen.

“We’re fortunate that the attackers hunt Bitcoin (money-motivated) and should not motivated by chaos and destruction,” stated Tobac.

Twitter stated final yr, “The social engineering that happened on July 15, 2020 focused a small variety of staff by means of a cellphone spear phishing assault.”

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“A profitable assault required the attackers to have entry to our inside community in addition to sure worker credentials that gave them entry to our inside help instruments,” stated Twitter.

“Not the entire initially attacked staff had been licensed to make use of account administration instruments, however the attackers used their credentials to entry our inside programs and procure details about our processes.”

O’Connor is charged with triple conspiracy to deliberately entry a pc and procure data from a protected laptop with out authorization; two counts of intentionally accessing a pc with out authorization and acquiring data from a protected laptop; and some extent of conspiracy to deliberately entry a pc with out authorization and ship a message containing a menace with the intention of blackmailing an individual into one thing of worth.

He’s additionally charged with extortionate communications; a rely of threatening letters; and two instances of cyberstalking.

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