Teen accused in Twitter hack targeting Obama, Bill Gates, others pleads not guilty – CBC.ca

Teen accused in Twitter hack targeting Obama, Bill Gates, others pleads not guilty – CBC.ca

A Florida teen identified as the mastermind of the scheme that gained control of Twitter accounts belonging to politicians, celebrities and tech moguls in order to scam people out of more than $100,000 US in Bitcoin has pleaded not guilty to multiple counts of fraud.Graham Ivan Clark, a Florida teen identified as the mastermind of…

A Florida teen is called the mastermind of the scheme that gained care for watch over of Twitter accounts belonging to politicians, celebrities and tech moguls in disclose to rip-off other folks out of more than $100,000 US in Bitcoin has pleaded now no longer guilty to more than one counts of fraud.

Graham Ivan Clark, a Florida teen is called the mastermind of scheme that gained care for watch over of Twitter accounts of politicians, celebrities and technology moguls, has pleaded now no longer guilty to more than one counts of fraud. (Matt Rourke/The Connected Press)

A Florida teen is called the mastermind of a scheme that gained care for watch over of Twitter accounts of mighty politicians, celebrities and technology moguls pleaded now no longer guilty on Tuesday to more than one counts of fraud.

Graham Ivan Clark, 17, is accused of using the hijacked Twitter accounts to rip-off other folks round the enviornment out of more than $100,000 US in Bitcoin.

He’s charged with 17 counts of communications fraud, 11 counts of fraudulent spend of private knowledge, and one count every of organized fraud of more than $5,000 and accessing computer systems or digital gadgets with out authority. The rapid hearing in Tampa came about of living through Zoom video conference.

Clark is scheduled for a bond hearing on Wednesday. He remains in the Hillsborough County Jail with bail space at $725,000, in step with courtroom records.

Clark changed into arrested on Friday in Tampa, and the Hillsborough Order Licensed official’s Location of industrial is prosecuting him as an grownup, a data liberate acknowledged. 

Hack centered celebrities, politicians, tech moguls

Two deal of males had been furthermore charged in the case. Mason Sheppard, 19, of Bognor Regis, U.Okay., and Nima Fazeli, 22, of Orlando had been charged individually closing week in California federal courtroom.

As fragment of the excessive-profile safety breach, bogus tweets had been sent out on July 15 from the accounts of Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Mike Bloomberg and a assortment of tech billionaires including Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Microsoft co-founder Invoice Gates and Tesla CEO Elon Musk. Celebrities Kanye West and his essential other, Kim Kardashian West, had been furthermore hacked.

The tweets supplied to send $2,000 for every $1,000 sent to an nameless Bitcoin take care of. 

Court papers in the California cases order Fazeli and Sheppard brokered the sale of Twitter accounts stolen by a hacker who known himself as “Kirk,” and acknowledged he can also “reset, swap and care for watch over any Twitter fable at will” in replace for cybercurrency funds, claiming to be a Twitter employee. 

The documents quit now no longer specify Kirk’s true id however order he’s a teen being prosecuted in the Tampa residence. 

Twitter has acknowledged the hacker gained gain entry to to a firm dashboard that manages accounts by utilizing social engineering and spear-phishing smartphones to hang credentials from “a small quantity” of Twitter staff “to create gain entry to to our internal systems.”

Spear-phishing makes spend of electronic mail or deal of messaging to deceive other folks into sharing gain entry to credentials. 

The attack on July 15, 2020, centered a small assortment of staff through a phone spear phishing attack. This attack relied on a essential and concerted strive to lie to obvious staff and exploit human vulnerabilities to create gain entry to to our internal systems.

—@TwitterSupport

Even though the case changed into investigated by the FBI and the U.S. Division of Justice, Hillsborough Order Licensed official Andrew Warren acknowledged his place of living of job is prosecuting Clark in divulge courtroom as a result of Florida law permits minors to be charged as adults in financial fraud cases when acceptable. He called Clark the leader of the hacking rip-off.

“This defendant lives right here in Tampa, he dedicated the crime right here, and he’ll be prosecuted right here,” Warren acknowledged Friday.

Clark is represented by Tampa attorney David Weisbrod, who has now no longer but replied to a phone name searching for comment about his client’s case. 

Hillsborough County Order Licensed official Andrew Warren, trusty, says he selected to prosecute Clark in divulge courtroom as Florida law permits minors to be charged as adults in obvious circumstances. (Chris O’Meara/The Connected Press)

Fazeli’s father steered The AP on Friday that he’s 100 per cent obvious his son is harmless. 

“He’s a extraordinarily merely person, very apt, very tidy and trusty,” Mohamad Fazeli acknowledged. “We’re as disturbed as all people else. I’m obvious right here’s a combine up.”

Federal courtroom records did no longer checklist attorneys for Sheppard or Fazeli.

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