Federal Agents Charged Florida Teen and two others in Twitter Scam

Highlights

  • Bitcoins worth $100,000 was lost in the fraudulent scheme
  • Shortly after the teenager was arrested, two more individuals were also charged with felony
  • Major tech giants and politicians also became victim to the massive attack
  •  The consequences of the cyber attack would have been fatal and could have had tremendous impact on the financial markets within America

The ‘Masterminds’ behind the attacks

According to a source, a 17 year old highschool teenager and two of his acquaintances were arrested on Friday by U.S. authorities in reaction to the bitcoin scam that took place last month. The teenager identified as Graham Ivan Clarks allegedly the mastermind behind this twitter breach. Mason Shepperd, 19, of the United Kingdom and Nima Fazeli,22, OF Orlando have also been charged along for assisting Graham in the scheme.

Several notable personalities , from politicians to celebrities, were affected by the breach that took place in mid-July. Many fraudulent tweets asking people to send Bitcoin contributions to an unknown address were sent from accounts belonging to former President Barack Obama, fromer New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg, former Microsoft CEO Bill Gates , amazon CEO Jeff Bezos , Tesla CEO Elon Musk, rapper Kanye West and his wife. According to federal prosecutors, the scheme hunted almost $117,000 in Bitcoin within a single day.

Graham has been charged with 30 felony charges, including17 counts of communication fraud and 11 counts of unlawful use of personal information. Sheppard is being charged with computer intrusion, wire fraud conspiracy and money laundering conspiracy which could have a combined effect of a 20 year sentence in the United States Fazeli is charged with on account of computer intrusion and five years of imprisonment.

Twitter responding to the arrest 

As cryptocurrencies are difficult to trace when stolen, the court documents proposed that it was the poor covering up of the tracks that lead to the arrests.

Soon after the arrests, Twitter expressed its gratitude for the law enforcement and said that it will cooperate completely with the investigation.

https://twitter.com/WFLARyan/status/1289269345277812737

“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.” The company said.

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