Alleged Silk Road creator indicted on 'kingpin' charges

The alleged operator of the online drug bazaar Silk Road, which was seized last October, has been indicted on four charges.

The US Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara announced Tuesday that Ross Ulbricht, who allegedly went by the moniker "Dread Pirate Roberts," could now face a minimum of 30 years in prison and a possible maximum sentence of life in prison.

The charges against Ulbricht include counts of narcotics conspiracy, continuing criminal enterprise, conspiracy to commit computer hacking, and money laundering conspiracy. The "continuing criminal enterprise" charge, or "kingpin" … Read more

SpyEye malware inventor pleads guilty to bank fraud

The alleged architect of the bank-hacking malware SpyEye, which is said to have infected 1.4 million computers, has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire and bank fraud. The US Department of Justice announced Tuesday that Russian national Aleksandr Andreevich Panin was the primary developer and distributor of SpyEye.

"As several recent and widely reported data breaches have shown, cyber-attacks pose a critical threat to our nation's economic security," US Attorney of the Northern District of Georgia Sally Quillian Yates said in a statement. "Today's plea is a great leap forward in our campaign … Read more

Google Glass at the movies gets man interrogated

There are enemies of the state, and then there are enemies of Jack Ryan.

A Google Glass wearer has told an extraordinary story of going to his local movie theater in Ohio and allegedly being accosted by the FBI for wearing his device.

In an impassioned and slightly shiver-making e-mail to The Gadgeteer, the man, who only gave his initials as T.U., said that he went to the AMC theater at the Easton Mall in Columbus in order to see the new Jack Ryan movie, "Shadow Recruit."

He was, he said, wearing Google Glass. His wife accompanied … Read more

Beware: MacBook Webcams can be used to covertly spy on people

Imagine going about your daily life and then one day receiving photos of yourself from inside your home. Sound spooky? Well, this really happened to a woman named Cassidy Wolf, according to the Washington Post. And, to make matters worse, she was nude in the photos.

How did this happen?

Apparently, there's a way for hackers to spy on people via their iSight Webcams in older Apple MacBooks. Typically, when the camera is on a little light is also set off. But, in a newly discovered workaround, this light can be deactivated -- meaning unsuspecting victims have no clue … Read more

Silk Road is resurrected with a new Dread Pirate Roberts

Buying illegal drugs on the Internet may be making a comeback. It's been a month since the FBI shuttered the online black market Silk Road, but it appears a clone has risen in its stead.

Silk Road 2.0 opened for business on Wednesday, according to dark-Web-focused site All Things Vice. Simultaneously, Twitter user Dread Pirate Roberts, which is allegedly the same moniker as the original Silk Road operator, tweeted the announcement of the new drug marketplace.

"#SilkRoad is back up. Deja vu anyone? #weriseagain," Dread Pirate Roberts tweeted.

#SilkRoad is back up. Deja vu anyone? #weriseagainRead more

CNET hosting Lavabit's Ladar Levison tonight: Join us!

You're invited to join CNET at our headquarters in downtown San Francisco tonight to meet Ladar Levison, who created the Lavabit e-mail service that's now at the center of a high-profile lawsuit over government surveillance and Americans' privacy rights. Please RSVP if you're able to come.

Levison, who pulled the plug on Lavabit to avoid becoming "complicit in crimes against the American people," has graciously agreed to join us to talk about his lawsuit pitting him against the US government. Lavabit's e-mail services were used by Edward Snowden, the source of leaks that have … Read more

Warrantless surveillance law may face test in criminal case

Federal prosecutors intend to use information gathered through the government's warrantless surveillance program in a criminal trial, setting up a possible court test of the constitutionality of such eavesdropping.

The Justice Department filed notice (PDF) late Friday that it plans to use "information obtained or derived from acquisition of foreign intelligence information conducted pursuant to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act" against an accused terrorist. Jamshid Muhtorov was charged in 2012 with providing material support to the Islamic Jihad Union, a designated foreign terrorist organization.

The filing will allow Muhtorov's lawyers to file a motion to suppress … Read more

Silk Road drug busts multiply, eight new people arrested

Authorities are not stopping with the takedown of Silk Road's alleged owner; they've also started going after supposed drug dealers who used the online black market Web site.

Since alleged owner Ross Ulbricht's indictment last week, eight people in three different countries have been arrested in association with Silk Road. Authorities claim all these people were dealing drugs on the site.

In the US, two people were arrested in Bellevue, Wash., for allegedly dealing cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine to hundreds of buyers, according to journalist Brian Krebs. Steven Lloyd Sadler, 40, was allegedly a top seller on … Read more

FBI seizes online drug marketplace Silk Road, outs owner in indictment

After years of surveying the site and even purchasing a number of illegal substances itself, the FBI has finally succeeded in closing the Silk Road, the online drug marketplace by which anonymous users employing the secure Tor browser could purchase and sell drugs with Bitcoin. The site is now replaced with an FBI seizure notice.

Ross Ulbricht, 29, alleged owner and operator of the Silk Road under the infamous online handle "Dread Pirate Roberts," has been indicted in the Southern District of New York after being reportedly arrested in San Francisco. He faces charges of computer hacking conspiracy, … Read more

Android security holes worry FBI, DHS

The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security are increasingly aware of the threats that law enforcement officers and officials face at a federal, state, and local level by using older versions of the Android mobile operating system, according to a document obtained by Public Intelligence, a group focused on releasing government information to the masses.

According to the document (PDF) -- marked as unclassified but "for official use only," and designed for police, fire, emergency medical services, and security personnel -- upwards of 44 percent of Android users worldwide are still using Android versions 2.3.3 … Read more