Authorities are still cracking down on participants in the July 2020 Twitter celebrity hacks. Spanish National Police have arrested UK citizen Joseph O’Connor at the US’ request over his alleged involvement in compromising over 130 Twitter accounts. Officials didn’t detail how O’Connor contributed to the campaign, but O’Connor has also been charged with hijacking TikTok and Snapchat accounts as well as cyberstalking a “juvenile” victim.
O’Connor faces a total of ten charges, including six related to unauthorized computer access, two for cyberstalking and one each for extortion and threats.
The Twitter hacks compromised accounts for a wide range of companies and personalities, including Apple, Uber, Elon Musk and eventual US President Joe Biden. The attackers apparently used social engineering to gain access to internal Twitter tools and promote a Bitcoin scam. It didn’t take long for police to arrest the claimed mastermind, teen hacker Graham Ivan Clark, who later pled guilty to 30 charges.
O’Connor’s arrest won’t topple a criminal organization as a result. However, it’s evident that US authorities want to send a message to would-be social media hackers — those perpetrators are risking serious charges, even if they’re not primarily responsible for the attacks.
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