17-Year-Old Graham Ivan Clark pleads not guilty for targeting about 130 Twitter accounts, tweeting bitcoin giveaway scams, and accessing the DM inbox from 36 accounts including that of Tesla CEO Elon Musk.
After the major hack, Twitter significantly limited access to its internal support management tools for hours to ensure ongoing account security while it finalized its investigation. It took Tesla CEO Elon Musk almost 2 days to fully gain access back into his twitter account.
How Twitter Was Hacked
The hacker(s) gained access to Twitter’s internal network by obtaining the credentials from specific Twitter employees.
The credentials of the hacked employees then provided “god mode” access to Twitter’s internal support tools, which the hacker(s) later used to gain god mode access to top twitter users.
17-year-old Florida resident Graham Clark was arrested the following Friday, according to Florida news channel WFLA. State Attorney Andrew Warren filed 30 felony charges, including organized fraud, communications fraud, fraudulent use of personal information, and access to computer or electronic devices without authority, WFLA reported.
Federal officials are also charging Nima Fazeli and Mason John Sheppard with aiding in the “intentional access of a protected computer” and conspiracy to commit wire fraud and money laundering, according to criminal complaints published Friday.
According to Coindesk, Graham Clark alleged to be the hack-group ringleader reportedly has more than $3 million worth of bitcoin, which is about 255,20 bitcoin in today’s rate.
A total of about $117,000 worth of cryptocurrency went to the hackers during the hack. In an investigation last year, authorities confiscated 400 bitcoin from Clark, but later returned 300. Although prosecutors have suggested Clark’s bitcoin stash was illegally acquired, his attorney has argued it was legitimate because the authorities returned it.
Clark now stands accused on 17 counts of communications fraud, 11 counts of fraudulent use of personal information, as well as one count of breaking into an electronic device and another for organized fraud.
Graham Clark pleaded not guilty to all charges brought against him by U.S. authorities. In a bail hearing Wednesday, Clark’s attorney said the $725,000 bail posted Saturday was “grossly inappropriate” with the $117,000 believed to have been gained in July’s hack. State prosecutors contested the defense’s argument, claiming Clark poses a danger if he has access to an electronic device. Conducted over Zoom, public access to the call was abruptly restricted after a series of loud interruptions or “zoom bombs.”
During the hearing, the judge and attorneys were interrupted several times with people shouting racial slurs, playing music and showing pornographic images.
The next hearing is scheduled for October 7, and officials say it will be password protected.