An American federal court today charged British hacker Daniel Kaye with additional accusations of access device fraud and conspiracy to launder money, among others. Seven years ago, he also took the whole country of Liberia offline after a massive cyberattack.
Kaye is allegedly running a dark web storefront called The Real Deal, where he sells items including narcotics and illegal hacking tools, The Verge reported. Materials being sold also include stolen login information for social media and bank accounts, as well as US government equipment.
The Real Deal allowed independent merchants to set up online shops, and customers could assess vendors according to their authenticity.
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New Legal Charges Against Daniel Kaye
Based on The Verge’s report, after running The Real Deal for almost a year, Kaye disappeared in August 2016, not long after it was revealed that other site administrators had been detained.
In today’s indictment, Kaye is charged with selling the login credentials for computers used by US government organizations. These credentials belong to the US Postal Service, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and the US Navy.
The allegation further claims that Kaye, together with an entity with an alias “thedarkoverlord,” engaged in stolen social security numbers and that Kaye possessed 15 or more stolen login passwords for Twitter and LinkedIn.
Finally, it asserts that Kaye used Bitmixer.io to launder the Bitcoin he acquired from The Real Deal transactions. Bitmixer.io is a website that provides Bitcoin mixed services and aims to keep its customers anonymous, confidential, and resistant to Bitcoin blockchain tracking research.
“While living overseas, this defendant allegedly operated an illegal website that made hacking tools and login credentials available for purchase, including those for US government agencies,” said US attorney Ryan K. Buchanan said in a statement via The Verge.
FBI’s Warning to All Hackers
According to Keri Farley, special agent in charge of FBI Atlanta, this investigation is an example of the agency’s persistent willingness to collaborate with its international partners. Their objective is to hold criminals accountable no matter how complicated their cyber schemes or geographic location is.
She added, “Let this indictment be a message that the FBI and our partners place a high priority on the investigation and prosecution of hackers who intrude into our infrastructure and threaten the personal security of our citizens.”
The 2019 Cyberattacks on a Liberian Telcom Firm
While Kaye is accused of running an illegal online market, the hacker already admitted responsibility to a series of cyberattacks against a Liberian telecoms business in 2019. That incident resulted in the country’s internet is down for many days.
According to CNN, Kaye was hired by a top employee at Cellcom, a competing telecom business. However, it is unclear whether other corporate executives were informed of the plot.
Kaye received a prison sentence of more than two years because of it.
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Written by Trisha Kae Andrada
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