Prime Time Crime

Internet & Identity theft

Big Brother surveillance

Anti Phishing Working Group

The Spamhaus Project

Not guilty

TORONTO - The 2 complainants, Stephanie Guthrie and Heather Reilly, testified that during 2012 Gregory Alan Elliott became obsessed with their Twitter feeds and incessantly tweeted at them, prompting them both to block him. (Toronto Star)  MORE:   Found not guilty    Even handed ruling   Comments gone too far    Freedom of expression   Trial you never heard about 


Value of your privacy

SEATTLE - Microsoft's latest operating system Windows 10 is now available, and is even free.  However, critics say its capacity to collect and exploit users' personal information likens it to worryingly invasive spyware.    (AFP)   MORE:   World of build-in costs


Hackers infiltrated servers

NEW YORK - A group of Russian hackers infiltrated the servers of Dow Jones & Company, owner of the Wall Street Journal and several other news publications, and stole information to trade on before it became public.   (Bloomberg) 


Duped by fake online reviews

LONDON - More than half of the adults in Britain, around 25M people, use online review websites to find the best deals.   But their impressions are 'distorted' by the growth of a 'clandestine' market for fake reviews, the Competition and Market Authority (CMA) has discovered.  (Telegraph UK)  REPORTS:   Online reviews & endorsements


China's Great Cannon

TORONTO - This post describes our analysis of China's 'Great Cannon,' our term for an attack tool that we identify as separate from, but co-located with, the Great Firewall of China. The first known usage of the Great Cannon is in the recent large-scale novel DDoS attack on both GitHub and servers used by  (Citizen Lab)  


Canadian hacker sentenced

WILMINGTON - David Pokora, 22, of Mississauga, ON, who pleaded guilty in Sept 2014 to conspiracy to commit computer fraud and copyright infringement, is believed to be the first foreign hacker ever convicted of stealing trade secrets in the US.  (CP) 


Crime has gone high-tech

When most people hear the word 'criminal,' they probably picture some dim-witted thug. But security expert Marc Goodman has been fighting crime for more than 20 years, and he's learned the hard way that crime is increasingly going high-tech, leaving law enforcement struggling to keep up.  (Wired)       Future Crimes


State sponsored hackers

TORONTO - Groups advocating for dissidents, refugees and human rights are virtually 'defenceless' against powerful state-sponsored hackers from China and elsewhere, according to a new report.   (Globe & Mail)  MORE:   Targeted digital threats   CSIS can't keep up   CSIS 2013-2014 public report   Main threats   


Malware takedown

On May 13 and 14, more than 350 homes were searched in 16 countries. The Eurojust release said the investigation was looking at the creators, sellers and users of BlackShades malware.  (Sun Media)   MORE:   Global hacker crackdown   US DOJ press release  


'Bait apps'

Tuck a youngster quietly into the backseat of a car with a cellphone and a game app and you might end up footing a bill for thousands of dollars worth of "virtual" berries or gems.   (CBC) 

Business is good

BRISBANE - A tradie could not explain to the Brisbane Magistrates Court how he acquired a $596M bank account, with another $1.56B worth of property.  Phillip Johnathan Harrison, 29, a carpenter-brick layer, of Tewantin, was charged with 7 offences including possession of various drugs and unlawful use of a motor vehicle.  (Brisbane Times)   MORE:   Bricklayer charged   Tradie says he only has $1.2M in property   Tradie may have fooled court with computer app


Alleged hack

WASHINGTON - The WikiLeaks organization posted material from what appears to be CIA Director John Brennan's personal email account. A CIA statement called the postings a 'crime.'   (AP)   REPORT:   CIA Director John Brennan emails   John O Brennan


Banned researcher

SYRACUSE - A security researcher kicked off a United Airlines flight last month after tweeting about security vulnerabilities in its system had previously taken control of an airplane and caused it to briefly fly sideways.  (Wired) MORE:   Security tech pulled off flight   Researcher admits to hacking plane   One World Labs   Denied flight   Accountability office report   .pdf   FBI warns airlines  


Spying program 'Equation group'

SAN FRANCISCO - A new report from Russian cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Lab said its researchers identified a new family of malicious programs or worms that infected computers in multiple countries, primarily overseas.  (AP)   MORE:   Gang targeting Canadian banks   Kaspersky Lab   Cyber robbery   Cybergang steals $1B   Carbanak  


Hacking traffic lights

Cesar Cerrudo told CTV's Canada AM that he’s hacked into the traffic systems of Seattle, Washington and New York City just to prove his point.  (CTV)


Password dump

More than 2M stolen passwords used for sites such as Facebook, Google and Yahoo and other web services have been posted online.  (BBC)   MORE:   Look what I found


Cybercrime report

Cybercrime cost Canadians $3B in the last 12 months, up from $1.4B the year before, according to a new report.    (CTV)   2013 Norton Report .pdf   2012 Norton Cybercrime Report   .pdf      


Anonymized isn't anonymous

Scientists showed they can identify you with more than 90% accuracy by looking at just 4 credit card purchases, 3 if the price is included - and this is after companies 'anonymized' the transaction records, saying they wiped away names and other personal details.   (CBC)   REPORT:   Reidentifiability of credit card metadata 


Killing hackers is justified

The Tallinn Manual on the International Law Applicable to Cyber Warfare (pdf) analyzes the rules of conventional war and applies them to state-sponsored cyberattacks. (Verge)   MORE:   Rules for cyberwar  


A 'significant' problem

TORONTO - Gaps in the cyber security efforts of Canadian corporations could be leaving them open to sophisticated attacks by hackers.   (CP) 


Fakes worth more

BOSTON  - In the world of cyber fraud, a fake fan on Instagram can be worth 5 times more than a stolen credit card number.  (Reuters)   PREVIOUS:   'Click farms'  


    Cyberbullying charges 

OTTAWA - Robert Campbell, 42, was hit with 27 counts of criminal harassment, 85 charges of defamation libel and 69 more of identity fraud after an 8-month probe called 'Project Winter.'    (Toronto Star)    MORE:   International cyberbullying

Hacking operation

NEWARK - 4 Russian nationals have been charged with running a hacking organization that over 7 years penetrated computer networks of more than a dozen major American and international corporations.  (AP)   MORE:   5 indicted


Internet of Things attack

SUNNYVALE - Proofpoint has uncovered what may be the first proven Internet of Things (IoT) - based cyberattack involving conventional household "smart" appliances.  (Proofpoint) 

Hacking a smart rifle

Precision guided firearms


Smart rifle

Take control of a Jeep Cherokee

Car hacking 

What can consumers do to stay safe

Chrysler recalls 1.4M hackable cars

Hacking risks


Baby monitor hacked   




Hacking Team hacked

MILAN - The Hacking Team, known for selling malicious spyware to police and spy agencies, confirmed the hack after a spokesperson urged clients to stop using the spyware while the company determines what information was exposed in the leaks.  (Global)  

Hacking Team and Canada

FBI spent $775K on Hacking Team's tools

Culprit exposed

How governments spy on their citizens

Copyright takedown notice

Adobe flash critical flaw 

Cat video hacked



5.6M fingerprints stolen

WASHINGTON - The OPM admitted that the number of federal employees' fingerprints compromised in the breach of its servers revealed over the summer has grown from 1.1M to 5.6M.  (Wired)

Data hack worse than admitted

Data hack included fingerprints


OPM data breach

Sex, lies and debt

Director resigns

Katherine Archuleta

Questionnaire for Security Positons (.pdf)

Making false statements 

US hack grows  


Blackmail syndicate

MADRID - The suspects persuaded people in foreign countries to expose themselves in front of webcams or send explicit material.  (BBC)  MORE:   Blackmail gang smashed   'Sextortion' ring busted  

Law will be hard to police

TORONTO - A new law designed to help unclog Canadians' email inboxes takes effect July 1, but the CRTC is warning that it won't be able to respond to every complaint it receives.  (CP)    


Info found

MEXICO CITY - An Amazon cloud server has a database with the personal information of the nation's 93.4M voters.  The database includes a raft of details for each registered voter, including address, voter ID number, date of birth, occupation and the names of his or her parents.   (EFE)

Casino hacked

River Cree

VTech hack


Hack exposes data of kids    

Turkey data leak

Appears to have been stolen in 2009

Guilty plea

'Biggest attack in history

Hacktivism has gone mainstream

FBI probe call hacking

Hacked conference call

Mexican websites

Double standard on 'secrets'


Hacking group announces end

War on Web anonymity 


EBay cyberattack



2 suicides linked

Ashley Madison data breach

Founder steps down  

Canadian charged

3 charged in data breach

Canadian among 3 charged     


Heartbleed suspect

First Heartbleed hack arrest

CSEC unaware of Heartbleed bug

Agencies knew for 2 years

SINs stolen

Heartbleed Bug 

Change your passwords

Head hacker was a mole

Hackers boss an informant

Hacked neo-Nazi websites reveal

Hector 'Sabu' Monsegur 

US indicted Anonymous

US indicts Anonymous members

Alleged hackers indicted 

Commons employee charged

Government hacked

Government's system under attack

2012 Stratfor email leak

Criminal No. 1:13-cr-383  .pdf  

Jeremy Hammond

Hacker sentenced

RCMP asked CRA to delay info    


Canadian connections

Ron Paul linked  

Anonymous hacks company


Hackers expose officials

Stratfor scandal  

Stratfor subscriber base posted  

Anonymous not anonymous

Hackivist response to FBI arrests

Anonymous NATO security breach

Hackers vow more cyber attacks

FBI takedowns

FBI raids homes  


Ethical hacking?  

Personal information released

Doing it for the 'lulz'    

Manage your online reputation

Sony cyber attacks  

Hacktivism hit on Iran


Malaysia next target

3 suspects arrested  

1 in 4 hackers 'is an FBI informer'  

IMF target of computer attack  

Nation-state behind attack

Anonymous arrests

Censorship in Turkey  

Anonymous attack on Turkey

Internet privacy  


Darkode goes dark

PITTSBURGH - The FBI and the DoJ said that 'Operation Shrouded Horizon,' a joint effort between law enforcement agencies in nearly 20 countries, had led to the seizure and shut down of the Darkode online forum's domain and servers.   (CNet) 


Marketplace shut down

DoJ Release: Hacking forum dismantled  

Rise of cryptocurrencies 


Bitcoin lawsuit

Mark Karpel 

Market capitalizations


Ripple   Litecoin   

Peercoin   Dogecoin 

Mt Gox

Mt Gox shuts down

EU, US cyber arrests



Raid shuts 400 'dark net' sites

Silk Road marketplace 

Panic sell-off

Horrible investment idea

Virtual currency skyrockets   

Seized Bitcoin

FBI tracked down the suspect

Silk Road shut down

Silk Road founder arrested

Silk Road busted

Police can't find the victim

Deep Web

Feds use civil forfeiture

Bitcoin bank closes

Flexcoin bank

Major online exchange vanishes 

Crisis Strategy Draft  

Mt Gox files for bankruptcy   


16 months for swatting

VANCOUVER - A teenager from Coquitlam, BC who called in a series of fake bomb, shooting and hostage threats across Canada and the US has been sentenced to 16 months in jail.   (CTV)

Swatting teen

Teen was bored    

Canadian admits to swatting

Teen arrested for swatting calls


Swatting incident 

Family swatting victims

Swatting call released

Police fearful of copycats 

Attack KOs websites

Cop named  

Teens charged

Swatting investigation

Swatting incident


Bank accounts hit

LONDON - The virus or malware, known as Dridex, may be responsible for worldwide losses of $100M so far.  (Guardian UK)  

Dridex P2P malware

US DoJ release   

'Suicide' code

Flame virus   N

ew advanced cyber threat  

Flame Q&A    

New cyberweapon discovered  

US 'key player in cyber attacks'


Caught flat footed

TOKYO - Japan was likely caught flat-footed by a recent spate of cyber attacks against the heart of its government and defense industry, experts said, warning that the country's credibility and diplomatic relations could suffer unless prompt countermeasures were put in place.  (Reuters) 

Ministry hit by cyber-attacks 

Data stolen in cyber-attacks

Cyber attack

Canadians don't know enough

Conference Board of Canada

Building capacity in cyber security

Age of cyber warfare is 'dawning'


Apple malware

Apple officials are cleaning up the company's App Store after a security firm reported that almost 40 iOS apps contained malicious code that made iPhones and iPads part of a botnet that stole potentially sensitive user information.   (Ars Technica)


List of infected apps

Cloud storage spied on

Cloud computing

Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act

Rise of America's lunatic fringe 

Speaking with silence


Your online choices 

Former general named   Stuxnet

Smart meters interfering

Apparent hacking 

Cloud concern

Twitter censor country-by-country

Online privacy  

Cookies crumble

Google tracking users  


Censorship in India

HTTP cookies

web beacons

deep packet inspection

Online behavioural advertising  

Online tracking rules  

Tips for online privacy  

Apple acts on tracking bug

Who owns your location?   

Apple denies iPhone tracking  

Apple cites bugs  

Your phone has sold you out  

iPad recording your movements

Big Brother

Greed & Corruption: copyright  

Phenomenon of the naked selfie


UN internet treaty

DUBAI - The ITU has no technical powers to change how the Internet operates or force countries to follow its nonbinding accords.  (AP)   MORE:    WCITleaks


Earlier this year the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the outfit in charge of addresses in cyberspace, allowed applications for new suffixes.  (Economist)


Browser flaw

Dozens of websites have been secretly harvesting lists of places that their users previously visited online, everything from news articles to bank sites to pornography, a team of computer scientists found.  (Fox)  What you need to know about online security flaws  

Security flaw

Computer-security researchers at the Radboud University Nijmegen in the Netherlands revealed how the smart-card technology, called MIFARE, can be hacked.  (CBC)    PREVIOUS:  Security-chip credit card   Smart card   Smart card attack   Hijacking smart cards  


Data hack

INDIANAPOLIS - Anthem, the nation's second-largest health insurer, has been hacked, exposing personal information about millions of its employees and customers. (Washington Post)     

80M records     

Data breach

Class action filed

Data missing


Breach part of scam


Data breach increase 

More retailers victims   

Target data breach


'Russians' behind cyberattack  

Most data breaches are inside jobs

2010 data breach report  .pdf 

Lost data discs

Data on 25M lost in post 


Next phase of anti-spam law

TORONTO - Starting on Jan. 15, 2015, companies will have to get consent before installing a program on a person's computer if the software has the ability to covertly send electronic messages or has other functionality outlined in the legislation.  (CP)  

'Spam king' 

Sanford Wallace  


Biggest cyberattack in history

Cyber Van


'Spam King' suspect seized

Robert Alan Soloway

Man's arrest could reduce spam

Vancouver man who 'owns the Internet'

AOL wants to dig for gold

Return of the 'Kosher Nazi'


Telemarketers still calling

MONTREAL - Express Transaction Services Inc. and some affiliated companies face several charges under the federal Competition Act and Criminal Code, following an investigation and police raids at its Montreal facilities in 2007. (CBC)  

Telemarketer arrested

US v Mouyal   .pdf   


Back in business  

Telemarketer $1M fine

CRTC's do-not-call-list enforcement

$15M fine for scam

Deceptive telemarketing charges

$158M scam  

Alleged ticket scammer 

Secrecy shrouds no-call probe

CRTC urged to stop tele-hackers

Bogus telemarketers

Thousands complain about do-not-call

Fake 'do not call list'

CRTC targets small fry

14 years

Police bust telemarketing fraud ring

LA wants accused scam artist

Operation Tele-PHONEY

Telemarketing fraud

Scammers fleece seniors

Telemarketer pleads guilty

Mobile phone crime blitz

Telemarketers face jail

1M Canadians victims 

9 years for lotto scam

Scamming elderly out of homes



BERLIN -  The Berlin-based Chaos Computer Club (CCC) said it had analyzed a "lawful interception" malware programme called Federal Trojan, used by the German police force.   (BBC)   MORE:  Federal Trojan   DigiTask admits sale of spyware   Hackers crack government spy software

FBI breach

WASHINGTON - A hacking collective says it has gained access to an FBI computer and recovered millions of unique identifying codes belonging to users of Apple devices.  (CTV)    MORE:  FBI tracking Apple users   Smartphones spyware   Smartphone who loved me   Smartphones skim   FBI denies leak  


Spyware targets dissidents

University of Toronto’s spy-busting Citizen Lab has raised the alarm on a new tool that is used against opposition sympathizers who try to secretly bypass government censorship. (Toronto Star)   REPORT:  Iranian software has a backdoor   Canadian software censors the net

Government fears

OTTAWA - The Public Safety Department worries Canada is becoming a digital launching pad for - not just a target of - malicious cyber-activities, confidential briefing notes reveal.    (CP)   MORE:   Cross-Cultural Roundtable on Security   Cyber security at risk   Canada's Critical Infrastructure   .pdf


CSIS on hacktivism

OTTAWA - Canada's spy agency says the online collective Anonymous isn't just a thorn in the side of the powerful, but the new model for digital hacktivism.   (CP)  PREVIOUS:  Security implications of a shifting news and media environment

Spying device

HONG KONG - For years now Chinese authorities have been installing spying devices on all dual-plate Chinese-Hong Kong vehicles, enabling a vast network of eavesdropping across the archipelago.   (Epoch Times) 


Legal warning scam

The Reveton Trojan, once downloaded and activated, causes computers to seize and display a fraudulent message purporting to come from the RCMP, CSIS, FBI or some other law-enforcement agency.  (CBC)

Espionage on games

Winnti: More than just a game 

New botnet

'Indestructible' botnet



Cyber scam

Zeus Trojan  

Clamp down on cyber fraud  

Cyber crime ring take down  

More than 60 charged in scheme  

E-spionage threat 


Gameover Zeus


FBI wanted 

USDOJ press release

Canadians join crackdown   


Court fines Scientology

PARIS - The Church of Scientology in France has been found guilty of defrauding its followers and its leaders have been handed fines and suspended prison sentences. However, the court did not ban the organization’s activities in France. 

Church of Scientology

'Criminal organization'

Celebrities lead charge

Scientology fined for fraud

Hackers war on Scientologists

L. Ron Hubbard

A. E. van Vogt

Non-Aristotelian logic

Office of Special Affairs

Operating Thetan documents




The Bi-national Working Group on Cross-Border Mass Marketing Fraud in its report on Identity Theft identifies the following means of theft: 

Physical Methods

Mail Theft

Theft from Residences and Personal Spaces  

Electronic Methods

Misuse Of Personal Data in Business Transactions

Phishing, Spoofing and Pretexting

Theft from Company or Government Databases

The report also deals with the scope of Identity Theft: 

In the United States, identity theft-related complaints reported to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) increased from 86,212 in 2001, to 161,836 in 2002, to 214,905 in 2003 -- an increase of nearly 250 percent.   In the first two quarters of 2004, the FTC received an additional 130,217 identity theft complaints. This means that the average number of complaints that the FTC received per week has consistently increased: more than 1600 per week in 2001, more than 3100 per week in 2002, more than 4100 per week in 2003 and more than 5000 per week in the first half of 2004.

In Canada, the PhoneBusters National Call Centre received 7629 identity theft complaints in 2002 from Canadians reporting total losses of more than CAN$8.5 million. In 2003, PhoneBusters received 14,526 identity theft-related complaints from Canadians, reflecting reported losses of more than CAN$21.8 million.

Statistics gathered by PhoneBusters in 2003 and the first half of 2004 indicate the largest number of complaints surrounding identity theft relate to credit cards or false application for a credit card (32 percent) and cell phones or false application for a cell phone (10-12 percent). Similarly, the FTC reports that in 2003, 33 percent of identity theft victims reported that their identifying information was used for credit card fraud and 16 percent of victims reported that their identifying information was used for fraud in ordering phone service. Cell phones accounted for 10.4 percent of this total while landline phones accounted for 5.6 percent. Due to challenges categorizing the statistical information, law enforcement in both countries has reason to believe that actual instances, particularly of credit card "takeover", may actually be much higher.

More Information on Identity Theft


Black market report

A set of Canadian 'fullz' - the basic data needed to steal someone's identity - now trades for around US$20 on the global market, down from a range of $35 to $45 in 2014, Dell Secureworks said in its latest Underground Hacker Marketplace Report.   (Huffington Post)

Ransomeware that knows where you live

RCMP scams & fraud

Competition Bureau  

Support centre launched

Canadian Identity Theft Support Centre

Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre

Government of Canada: Identity Theft

The 'Social Engineering' of Internet Fraud

US FTC: Identity Theft

Reducing the Rick of Identity Theft


March is fraud prevention month

Preventing Fraud in the Digital Age

Credit card skimming operation

CALGARY - Police believe during the operation, the accused were able to obtain over 500 credit card numbers per month from gas pump skimmers.  (Beacon)    

Debit card fraud drops

Interac Association

Fake ID cards

Stolen IDs used 

1,500 scammed by ATM 

Credit card fraud 

Greek ID theft

2 arrested in taxi debit card scam

Fake taxi drivers  

Suspected terrorist links

'Synthetic' identity fraud cost 

Credit cards seized

4 charged  

Credit card ring

Global ATM scam 


Identity theft factory found

Identity thief gets sentence

Ottawa missed chance to deport

Data theft worse than first reported

Fake companies, real money

How easy it is to steal ID

An identity theft nightmare

Credit card leaks continue

New scam uses counterfeit checks

Scam artists target online checks

Con artists target phone system

Identify theft

Debit machine scam

BC a global centre for fake ID

Thieves after more than credit card

How credit-card data went out door

Debit card scam

Shocked retailers tighten up

ChoicePoint previous identity theft

Bank of America Security Lapse

Keep thieves out of your account

Crooks are phishing for your life

California sets fines for spyware

The makers of computer programs that secretly spy on what people do with their home PCs could face hefty fines in California.  From 1 January, a new law is being introduced to protect computer users from software known as spyware.  (BBC)

If you have not installed Spybot or AdAware think about doing so.  It’s free. – Chris 

Freeze on anti-spam campaign

Anti-spam plan overwhelms sites

Spoofing' a growing fraud problem

Mounties charge virus suspect

Firms warn of new Mydoom worm

'Sasser' teen released other worms

Teen 'confesses' to Sasser worm

Man sentenced to 14 years

150 cyber criminals caught

Warning on hard drives' security

Online job scammers steal millions

Digital crooks craft of 'phishing'

Two adware firms battling in court

For a more complete list

Spam domain blacklist 

For a more complete description

Crimes of persuasion: Nigerian Letter Scam



Prime Time Crime

Recent Headlines