If you combined the movie “Tron” with “America’s Dumbest Criminals,” the film would have been shot in a Texas courtroom. This is where Higinio O. Ochoa III was charged with hacking into four law enforcement websites. The accused hacker, who goes by the moniker “w0rmer,” boasted of his achievements online. Admittedly, Ochoa was able to penetrate official websites that presumably had some level of security measures in place. So how was he stupid?
Glad you asked…
Back in January, I warned readers of Law Enforcement Today that unsuspecting people who upload pics from mobile devices unwittingly provide precise GPS location information embedded in the file. Obviously, “w0rmer” is not an avid reader of this online publication. Had he been, he never would have posted a picture of his girlfriend’s bountiful cleavage and a sign taunting his victims. What a boob.
In February, Ochoa posted stolen data on his Twitter account. It was at the end of this post where “w0rmer” left his double-barreled calling card. Most people who encounter members of the FBI do not comment on their sense of humor… they display little to the general public. It should not be surprising that FBI agents were not reeling with laughter when Ochoa and his buddies in CabinCr3w (an offshoot of the hacker group Anonymous) called law enforcement “BiTch’s” (sic). Instead, they tracked down his girlfriend using a GPS fix accurate to 30 feet.
So why was Higinio O. Ochoa III blind to the digital reality of geo-tagging? Well, I’ve seen the pics and my guess is that he was just a deer caught in the headlights. At any rate, we did find out what kind of picture makes am FBI special agent belly-laugh… one showing a formerly smug hacker sitting in the defendant’s chair.
Bruce Bremer, MBA is LET’s technology contributor. Bruce retired from the Submarine Service after 21 years of in-depth experience with complex electronic technology. Since then, he has been involved in fleet modernization and military research analysis. He teaches electronics and alternative energy at a Virginia college. Besides his MBA, Bruce earned a Bachelor of Science degree in computer networking. He has been volunteering in public safety for many years.
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