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Crime Privacy Communications Security

Collar-Bomber Tracked By Gmail Accesses 119

Posted by Soulskill
from the crimes-that-would-have-worked-better-in-the-80s dept.
RockDoctor writes "Reports indicate that a suspect has been arrested in the Australian 'collar bomb' hostage/extortion case. The allegation is that the suspect had set up a Gmail account, through which he (allegedly) planned to communicate with the extortion victims and arrange delivery of the payment. Unfortunately for him, records were kept showing the location and time the account was set up, and also for a number of accesses. This information, combined with 'CCTV footage and motor vehicle records,' allowed the police to put an identity to the suspect, and arrange for his arrest. So, if you're planning an extortion scheme, don't drive your car to the internet cafe, don't set up the account from an airport, wear anonymous clothes (like Jason Bourne does?) and do all your accesses through hacked shell accounts somewhere in Outer Mongolia. But, this being Slashdot, everyone knew that already."
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Collar-Bomber Tracked By Gmail Accesses

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 17, 2011 @07:17AM (#37117724)

    Don't do anything illegal.

  • by dohzer (867770) on Wednesday August 17, 2011 @07:22AM (#37117750) Homepage

    Tell that to the people who get wrongly jailed.

  • Um (Score:5, Insightful)

    by assertation (1255714) on Wednesday August 17, 2011 @07:45AM (#37117938)

    But, this being Slashdot, everyone knew that already

    Anyone with a gmail account should know it. You go to a few Google places while signed in it tells you your location. You don't need to be a geek or what passes for one on Slashdot. You only need to be awake.

  • What a sick freak! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by darkmeridian (119044) <.william.chuang. .at. .gmail.com.> on Wednesday August 17, 2011 @08:01AM (#37118064) Homepage

    So he wasn't very technically savvy, and let's make fun of him for that. But Jesus F'innng Christ!!! He stuck a fake bomb collar around the neck of an eighteen year old girl to extort her parents. It took cops TEN HOURS to get that device off of her. Can you freaking imagine that ordeal? I would have shit my pants a few times already in that time span.

    And not to be disrespectful or anything, but that girl is really pretty!

  • Re:or, even better (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Hatta (162192) on Wednesday August 17, 2011 @08:50AM (#37118556) Journal

    Smart criminals exist. We call them politicians and executives.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 17, 2011 @08:58AM (#37118616)

    All these Hollywood films give the impression that a clever individual can, with anonymity, challenge the state, rob a bank, uncover corruption at the highest levels and so on. In practice it is already impossible to do any of those things. Yes, you can get your hands on explosives, guns, private data, information etc. and sure, you can send emails, make phone calls from a stolen mobile phone and so on, but there are so many logs these days that if the authorities want to track down who did it they can.

    You cannot walk through London without being recorded on hundreds of CCTV systems. All mobile phone calls are logged by number and location. No vehicle on the UK motorway system goes unrecorded. Twitter, Google and Facebook all cooperate with the authorities and hold your data long after you believe that you have deleted it.

    One person in the UK has just been given a 4 year jail sentence for encouraging rioting via his twitter account. Come the revolution the revolutionaries will be outsmarted and in jail.

    Technology has tipped the balance heavily in favour of authority and you cannot do much about it, except wave banners around and chant, and to be honest that is just entertainment for the masses, column inches for the tabloids and will change nothing.

  • Re:or, even better (Score:4, Insightful)

    by MacGyver2210 (1053110) on Wednesday August 17, 2011 @09:50AM (#37119148)

    Given the copyright laws in most of the developed world, I'd say most Slashdotters are smart criminals...

The reason that every major university maintains a department of mathematics is that it's cheaper than institutionalizing all those people.

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