He saved the world but now the FBI has him locked up in Vegas!
Do you remember the story of that wonderful British surfer who, three months ago, saved the entire world from computer disaster? Catch up here! Well, he was just in Las Vegas for a computer hacker conference and allegedly pulled off his plane by FBI agents. Let’s read The Daily Mail!
The British computer expert who stopped the WannaCry ransomware attack that wreaked havoc around the world and hit NHS computers has been detained by the FBI in Las Vegas, according to reports.
Marcus Hutchins discovered a ‘kill switch’ for the virus after it paralysed thousands of NHS computers and claimed hundreds of thousands of victims around the world – including US courier service FedEx and German rail company Deutsche Bahn – in May.
But now the internet hero, also known as MalwareTech, has been arrested in Nevada, according to Motherboard.
It is unclear what charges – if any – the 23-year-old from Ilfracombe, Devon, now faces.
He was being held at the Henderson Detention Center after being arrested at arrested at Las Vagas’s McCarran International Airport but has since been moved to another facility, a friend has said.
The friend, who also works in the cyber security industry, was attending the Def Con event in the Nevada city with Hutchins.
He said: ‘He checked into his flight and I think he was sitting in the Virgin upper class lounge.
‘He was escorted out of the airport and never made his flight.’
Hutchins was in Las Vegas for the Black Hat and Def Con hacking conferences.
And now Time magazine!
A computer law expert on Friday described the evidence behind the U.S. arrest of a notorious British cybersecurity researcher as being problematic — an indictment so flimsy that it could create a climate of distrust between the U.S. government and the community of software experts.
News of Marcus Hutchins’ arrest in the United States for allegedly creating and selling malicious software able to collect bank account passwords has shocked the cybersecurity community. Many had rallied behind the British hacker, whose quick thinking helped control the spread of the WannaCry ransomware attack that crippled thousands of computers in May.
Attorney Tor Ekeland told The Associated Press that the facts in the indictment fail to show intent.
“This is a very, very problematic prosecution to my mind, and I think it’s bizarre that the United States government has chosen to prosecute somebody who’s arguably their hero in the WannaCry malware attack and potentially saved lives and thousands, hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of dollars over the sale of alleged malware,” Ekeland said. “This is just bizarre, it creates a disincentive for anybody in the information security industry to cooperate with the government.”
Hutchins was detained in Las Vegas as he was returning to his home in southwest Britain from an annual gathering of hackers and information security gurus. A grand jury indictment charged Hutchins with creating and distributing malware known as the Kronos banking Trojan.
“The only money mentioned in this indictment is … for the sale of the software,” he said. “Which again is problematic because in my opinion of this, if the legal theory behind this indictment is correct, well then half of the United States software industry is potentially a bunch of felons.”
Well that doesn’t sound very good. That doesn’t sound very good at all.
But real quick, have you ever been to a computer hacker convention in Las Vegas? Would you like to go with me next year or would we get all our Bitcoin stolen in a digital alley?