Intelligence: Stumbling Across Islamic Hackers

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February16, 2007: Many of us know the Internet is overrun with scams and crooks. We only have to look at the spam that slips through our spam filters to get a taste. Less known is the fact that some of these Internet crooks are doing it to support Islamic terrorism. An example of this was recently revealed at a computer security conference, as two researchers described how they had worked their way into the Internet criminal underground, to find out how it operated, and came up against a group of hackers that also maintained several Islamic radical websites, and that used some of their stolen credit card data was used to buy communications gear and laptops of the type favored by terrorists. The researchers brought in law enforcement when it became obvious they had some real bad guys in their sights. All that could be revealed was that some of the hackers operations (like botnets) were shut down, and that the bad guys were still out there, in the Middle East and Germany. Actually, these hackers may have been arrested, but in this aspect of the war on terror, you don't broadcast that sort of thing. That's because you want the people the hackers work with (rarely face-to-face) to believe the Islamic radical hackers are still in business. That way, you can identify more of the people involved, especially those terrorists on the receiving end of stolen money and goods.

 


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