Meta (formerly Facebook) has said that it recently took down a network of thousands of fake and misleading accounts based in China.
A 24-year-old hacker behind the massive July 2020 Twitter hack where he along with others attempted to take control of at least 130 famous Twitter accounts has been sentenced to federal prison in the US.
Joseph James O’Connor attacked several celebrity accounts including US President Joe Biden, American socialite and model Kim Kardashian and Tesla CEO Elon Musk.
O’Connor was sentenced in a New York federal court to five years in prison, after pleading guilty in May to his role in cyber stalking and computer hacking that targeted several high-profile social media accounts.
In the court, he said his crimes were “stupid and pointless”, and apologised to his victims, reports TechCrunch.
O’Connor, known by his online handle PlugWalkJoe, was part of a group that broke into dozens of high-profile Twitter accounts, including Apple, Binance, Bill Gates, Joe Biden and Elon Musk, to spread cryptocurrency scams in July 2020.
He was extradited to the US from Spain in April this year, where he awaited trial for harassing, threatening, and extorting his victims.
O’Connor, in July 2020, wrote on Biden’s account: “All Bitcoin sent to the address below will be sent back double! If you send $1,000, I will send back $2,000. Only doing this for 30 minutes. Enjoy!”
Twitter then responded at that time by deactivating all verified accounts and disabling the tweet feature in an attempt to target the hackers.
As part of his guilty plea, O’Connor has agreed to pay restitution to all of the victims and forfeit just over $7,94,000.