US Teenager, Graham Clark has a been arrested for allegedly masterminding the massive Twitter hack that happened on July 15. The 17-year-old teenager was arrested in Tampa, Florida on Friday.
Mason Sheppard, 19 and Nima Fazeli, 22 are also among the three individuals charged over the Twitter hack, according to US Department of Justice.
The individuals were allegedly responsible for the large-scale Twitter hack that had compromised about 130 accounts including accounts of high profile individuals like former President Barack Obama, Amazon boss Jeff Bezos, entrepreneur Elon Musk and Microsoft founder Bill Gates.
The hackers used the hijacked accounts to perpetrate a crypto-scam on 15 July.
After the hack, Twitter said the hackers had targeted its employees with access to internal systems and tools. The company added that it has taken steps to limit access to such internal systems and tools.
Teenager faces over 30 felony charges
According to the Hillsborough State Attorney in Florida, Graham will face up to 30 felony charges for the Twitter hack. The charges against the teenager include 17 counts of communication fraud, 10 counts of fraudulent use of personal information, one count of fraudulent use of personal information with over $100,000 (£76,340) or 30 or more victims, one count of organised fraud and one count of access to computers or electronic devices without authority.
Speaking on the arrest, Hillsborough District Attorney, Andrew Warren said that Graham is no ordinary 17 year old.
“He’s a 17 year-old kid who apparently just graduated high school. But make no mistake, this was not an ordinary 17-year-old. This was a highly sophisticated attack on a magnitude not seen before.”Andrew Warren, Hillsborough District Attorney
He added that the teenager will be charged as an adult under Florida law, rather than federal, because Florida law allows us greater flexibility to charge a minor as an adult in a financial fraud case.
The other individuals, Mason who lives in Bognor Regis on the UK south coast and Nima from Orlando, have also been charged over a major Twitter hack in Florida.
Reacting to the arrest, Twitter in a statement appreciated the swift response of law enforcement. It added that will focus on being more transparent and provide more updates on the issue regularly.
“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.”Extract Twitter statement
Due to the almost untraceable nature of crypto-transactions, most crypto scammers tend to get away with their crimes. However, US Attorney Anderson has said it is a false belief.
“There is a false belief within the criminal hacker community that attacks like the Twitter hack can be perpetrated anonymously and without consequence.”
He added that criminal conduct over the Internet may feel stealthy to the people who perpetrate it, but there is nothing stealthy about it. Following the arrest of Graham, Anderson cautioned would-be offenders that they will be found if they break the law.
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