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Twitter Hack: Three Arrested in the Bitcoin Scam

Three individuals charged for roles in a high-profile Twitter hack, Bitcoin scam.

Graham Clark, a resident of Tampa Florida has been arrested under charges of being involved in July’s Twitter hack that targeted the handles of famous personalities including the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla Inc., Elon Musk, and former President of the US Barack Obama, to name a few. The other two suspects arrested by Californian authorities are Nima “Rolex” Fazeli of Orlando and Mason “Chaewon” Sheppard from Bognor Regis, U.K.

The alleged three ran a scheme under which they hijacked the twitter accounts of various public figures and posted tweets advertising a bitcoin scam from these high-profile accounts. In order to acquire access to internal support tools and these Twitter accounts, Clark compromised a Twitter employee and made use of his credentials. After gaining access to 130 accounts belonging to politicians and celebrities, he tweeted Bitcoin scam messages from 45 and accessed direct messages inbox of 36 of them and stopped with downloading the Twitter Data for a total of 7 accounts. Reportedly, the three cybercriminals involved made a profit worth $120,000 worth of bitcoins as a result of the scam.

Among the affected accounts were Amazon’s founder, Jeff Bezos, Microsoft’s CEO Bill Gates, Kim Kardashian West and Joe Biden.

According to operation led by the FBI in collaboration with the Secret Service and IRS, 17-year-old, Graham Clark is identified as the mastermind of the sophisticated incident; the teenager is just a high-school graduate who will be prosecuted by Hillsborough State authorities.

Bearing charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and money laundering, aiding the mastermind in orchestrating the attack, Sheppard is subjected to 45 years of imprisonment as the maximum penalty.

In a related video news conference, State Attorney, Warren said, "I want to congratulate our federal law enforcement partners, the US Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California, the FBI, the IRS, the US Secret Service, and the Florida Department of Law enforcement. These partners worked extremely quickly to investigate and identify the perpetrators of this sophisticated and extensive fraud."

"This defendant lives here in Tampa, he committed the crimes here, and he’ll be prosecuted here,"

"The State Attorney's Office is handling this prosecution rather than federal prosecutors because Florida law allows for us greater flexibility to charge a minor as an adult in a financial fraud case like this." He added.

Meanwhile, in the regard, Twitter said "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."
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