Online Voyeur Sentenced For Webcam Hacks

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Creep alert. Stefan Rigo hacked webcams using BlackShades malware and spied on couples having sex

A cybercriminal has used the notorious BlackShades malware to hack into people’s webcams and observe them having sex.

Stefan Rigo, 33, of Leeds, was arrested in November last year as part of an international operation to take down users of the software, which designed to remotely take over, control and steal information from computers.

Webcam Voyeur

Rigo has been added to the sex offenders register for seven years and has been given a 40 week suspended sentence, according to the National Crime Agency (NCA).

He also ordered to undertake 200 hours of unpaid work and forfeit of all his computer equipment.

The crime agency said that Rigo had used his ex-girlfriend’s details to pay for and download the Blackshades Remote Access Tool, or RAT.

Blackshades has been around since 2010 and has been sold and distributed to thousands of cybercriminals throughout the world, and it has corrupted more than a half a million computers in more than 100 countries.

webcam © jcjgphotography ShutterstockOnce the RAT is installed on a victims computer, the hacker can access and view documents, photographs, and other files on the victim’s computer. They can also record all of the keystrokes entered on the victim’s keyboard, steal the passwords to the victim’s online accounts, and even activate the victim’s web camera to spy on the victim – all of which could be done without the victim’s knowledge

Swedish citizen Alex Yucel, was sentenced in June to 57 months in prison after he was found guilty of selling the Blackshades Remote Access Tool via Yucel’s company, Blackshades.

Meanwhile, besides being a hacker it seems that Rigo was also something of a webcam voyeur.

When the police carried out a forensic examination of Rigo’s computer equipment, they discovered a series of images that involved people engaged in sexual acts over Skype or in front of their computers.

Rigo admitted to police that he used Blackshades to control people’s webcams and monitor their desktops, which allowed him to obtain passwords and email content. An NCA spokesman told the BBC that out of 14 confirmed individuals he spied on – roughly half were people he knew personally.

All of which landed Rigo in hot water and at Leeds Magistrates Court last month, he was found guilty of voyeurism offences.

Remote Spying

“During his trial he admitted to being addicted to monitoring people via their computers, spending 5 to 12 hours a day doing so over a three year period,” said the NCA. “He also pled guilty to Computer Misuse Act offences.”

“People using malicious tools like Blackshades can massively violate the privacy of their victims, and use compromised computers to facilitate further crime,” said Angela McKenna, senior investigating officer for the NCA’s National Cyber Crime Unit.

“Users of these tools are continuing to find that despite having no physical contact or interaction with their victims, they can still be identified, tracked down and brought to justice by the NCA and its partners,” said McKenna.

People are advised to avoid clicking on unknown links, or files sent from unidentified or suspicious sources, in order to minimise the risk from malicious RAT use.

Last year the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) warned that live video feeds from thousands of webcams, CCTV camera and baby monitors around the world have been hacked and put up online.

In May 2014, international police forces arrested 80 people involved in creation, distribution and use of malware sold under the BlackShades brand, 17 of them were in the UK.

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Author: Tom Jowitt
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