Friday, May 26, 2006

Teens arrested in alleged MySpace extortion scam

CNET "Two New York teenagers have been arrested and charged with attempting to extort $150,000 from MySpace, the popular community Web site.

Shaun Harrison, 18, and Saverio Mondelli, 19, both of whom are from Suffolk County, N.Y., were arrested in a sting operation last week, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's office said Wednesday. The pair had traveled to Los Angeles to meet people they allegedly believed were MySpace employees, but who were in fact undercover investigators, according to the district attorney's statement.

The alleged crimes began late last year when the two young men took advantage of a flaw they had discovered in the MySpace Web site in order to obtain personal information on MySpace users, the district attorney said.

MySpace discovered the intrusion earlier this year and blocked it. The Los Angeles-based company also reported the incident to authorities. During the course of the investigation, threats were made that unless $150,000 was paid, new exploit code would be released, according to the statement.

By this time, the sting operation had been set up, so instead of meeting with MySpace late last week, the pair from New York met with undercover officers from the U.S. Secret Service and the Los Angeles District Attorney's Bureau of Investigation. "

No comments: