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12 November 2007, 12:48

Security expert charged with operating a bot net

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For the first time in the history of California, the operator of a bot net has been put on trial. What is more, according to LA Times, the accused is a security expert employed by 3G Communications. Among other things, 3G Communications offers network and VoIP security services. The accused, John Schiefer alias "acidstorm", is said to have infected approximately 250,000 Windows systems and used them for various attacks.

According to the prosecution, he mainly stole and sold on PayPal account credentials, also using them to make his own purchases. In addition, he is said to have received 19,000 dollars from a Dutch Internet advertising company in return for secretly installing adware on 150,000 PCs without the PC owners' knowledge. He is said to have conducted his criminal activities both from his home and his office PC.

According to the US media, Schiefer has already made a confession. He is facing a maximum sentence of 60 years in prison and a 1.75 million dollar fine. Investigators are said to have been tracing him since 2005.

Last week also saw the detention in Italy of Roberto Preatoni, founder of the [ticker:uk_96800 WabiSabiLabi] online exploit auction platform. Before becoming involved with WabiSabiLabi, Preatoni worked as a penetration tester for Tiger Team on a contract for Telecom Italy. There, he is said to have been involved in illegal surveillance of Carla Cico, CEO of Brasil Telecom, and Fausto Carioti and David Giacalone, two journalists of the Italian Libero daily newspaper. In addition, the team is said to have installed a trojan on the PC of Vittorio Colao, former CEO of RCS MediaGroup.

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