US teenager, two other men arrested for Twitter hack: Justice Department

The Twitter logo and binary cyber codes are seen in this illustration. (File Photo: Reuters)

A 17-year-old Tampa teenager was arrested for being the "mastermind" behind the Twitter hack, which compromised the profiles of many prominent personalities and organizations, according to the Hillsborough State Attorney's Office.

"The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the US Department of Justice conducted a complex nationwide investigation, locating and apprehending the suspect in Hillsborough County," the statement said.

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Investigators identified Florida resident Graham Ivan Clark as the "mastermind" of the cyberattack and arrested him in Tampa, Hillsborough state attorney Andrew Warren said.

"This defendant lives here in Tampa, he committed the crime here, and he'll be prosecuted here," Warren added.

The Justice Department also identified two other men who were charged in connection with the hack as Mason Sheppard, of Bognor Regis in the United Kingdom, and Nima Fazeli of Orlando, Florida.

On July 15, a wave of tweets in a hacking swept through Twitter, with over half a dozen high-profile accounts - belonging to US presidential candidate Joe Biden, billionaire Bill Gates, and rapper Kanye West, among others - used to solicit bitcoin donations.

Read more: Major Twitter accounts swept up in wave of apparent hacking, investigation underway

Posts trying to dupe people into sending the hackers Bitcoin were tweeted by the official accounts of Apple, Uber and many others, forcing Twitter to lock large numbers of accounts in damage control.

More than $100,000 worth of the virtual currency was sent to email addresses mentioned in the tweets, according to Blockchain.com, which monitors crypto transactions.

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Last Update: Friday, 31 July 2020 KSA 22:40 - GMT 19:40
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