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17th of August 2017

Internet



British Security Researcher Credited for Stopping WannaCry Is Charged in a U.S. Cybercrime Case

Cybersecurity researcher to appear in court in Las Vegas charged in a US cybercrime case. The 23-year-old British security researcher, Marcus Hutchins, who a few months ago was credited with stopping the WannaCry outbreak by discovering a hidden "kill switch" for the malware, is now reported to have been arrested by the FBI over his alleged involvement in separate malicious software targeting bank accounts. The Guardian reports: "According to an indictment released by the US Department of Justice on Thursday, Hutchins is accused of having helped to create, spread and maintain the banking trojan Kronos between 2014 and 2015. The Kronos malware was spread through emails with malicious attachments such as compromised Microsoft Word documents, and hijacked credentials such as internet banking passwords to let its user steal money with ease."

— The Kronos indictment: Is it a crime to create and sell malware? Orin Kerr from the Washington Post writes: "The indictment asserts that Hutchins created the malware and an unnamed co-conspirator took the lead in selling it. The indictment charges a slew of different crimes… Do the charges hold up? Just based on a first look at the case, my sense is that the government’s theory of the case is fairly aggressive. It will lead to some significant legal challenges."

Related topics: Cybercrime, Cybersecurity, Malware

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