States

Cops bust British man for 2020 Twitter hack of Biden, Obama, Musk accounts

Spanish cops arrested a British man in Spain on Wednesday in connection with the 2020 hacking of hundreds of prominent Twitter accounts — including those of President Biden, former President Barack Obama, Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Microsoft founder Bill Gates — in an effort to defraud their followers of bitcoin, the Justice Department said.

The DOJ said 22-year-old Joseph O’Connor was arrested in Estepona, Spain, after US authorities charged him in connection with the July 2020 hacking of more than 130 high-profile accounts.

Authorities said he was additionally charged with intrusions “related to takeovers of TikTok and Snapchat user accounts” and cyberstalking a juvenile.

O’Connor is charged by criminal complaint in California federal court.

Three other people were previously charged in connection with the Twitter hack. Last year, an analysis by a cryptocurrency compliance firm found that the scammers took more than $100,000 worth of bitcoin.

The hack garnered widespread international attention as an unprecedented breach of security on Twitter, one of the world’s biggest social media platforms.

Jeff Bezos tweet sent out by hackers.
The hack garnered widespread international attention as an unprecedented breach of security on Twitter.
Twitter
Bill Gates tweet sent by hackers.
The hackers targeted major figures in politics and business.
Twitter
Joe Biden tweet sent by hackers.
Similar crypto impersonation scams have exploded in popularity in recent months.
Twitter

The hackers targeted major figures in politics and businesses, including Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and then-presidential hopeful Kanye West, as well as a handful of celebrities, including Kim Kardashian.

“Feeling greatful, doubling all payments sent to my BTC address!,” the affected accounts tweeted, misspelling the word grateful. “You send $1,000, I send back $2,000! Only doing this for the next 30 minutes.”

That was followed by another tweet that said the user was “feeling generous because of Covid-19.”

“Everyone is asking me to give back, and now is the time,” a quickly deleted tweet from Gates’ account read on the day of the hacking. “I am doubling all payments sent to my BTC address for the next 30 minutes.”

Crypto impersonation scams like that have exploded in popularity in recent months. In May, federal regulators said impersonators of Musk had stolen at least $2 million in cryptocurrency scams over just the prior six months.

Source

Show More

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button