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ITMG Insider Threat Cases – December 14, 2020

Leaked Chinese Communist Party records show CCP members employed in senior, specialist and advisory positions: The Communist Party operatives were discovered at 10 consulates in Shanghai

In a coordinated effort lasting more than a decade, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) used a recruitment agency to infiltrate British, Australian, and U.S. consulates in Shanghai. A new report from The Australian said leaked membership records revealed information regarding almost two million CCP members, leading to the discovery that 10 consulates in the Eastern city have Communist Party workers. The members are serving as senior political and government affairs specialists, economic advisers, clerks, and executive assistants, according to the paper. The database — which was sent to the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China in mid-September — shows that CCP members are or have been employed by British, German, Swiss, Indian, New Zealand, Italian, and South African missions in the coastal metropolis and through the Shanghai Foreign Agency Service Department.

Former Cisco engineer accessed Cisco’s AWS accounts, and deleted 456 virtual machines, which resulted in the loss of 16k Webex accounts

A former Cisco engineer was sentenced this week to 24 months in prison for accessing Cisco’s network without authorization after he left the company and then destroying servers that hosted infrastructure for the Cisco Webex Teams service. Have a look at 2020’s best robot vacuums — all tried and tested in my office and home. Sudhish Kasaba Ramesh, 31, of San Jose, was formally charged earlier this year in July and pleaded guilty a month later in August. According to court documents, Ramesh worked for Cisco between July 2016 and April 2018, when he resigned and joined another company.

Absa bank embroiled in data leak, rogue employee accused of theft: Personal information belonging to banking customers was compromised.

Absa has notified customers of a data breach potentially compromising their personal information. The Johannesburg, South Africa-based financial services group, which provides personal and business banking as well as wealth management services, has pointed the finger at an employee for the security incident. Absa maintains a presence in 12 countries across the continent and accounts for roughly 42,000 employees. As reported by local publication MyBroadband, Absa sent an email to customers on Monday informing them of the data breach. The message said that personally identifiable information (PII) belonging to clients was exposed to “external parties.” “We regret to notify you that Absa has identified an isolated internal data leak whereby personal information of a limited number of Absa customers was shared with parties external to the bank,” the financial group said. ID numbers, contact details, physical home addresses, and account numbers are thought to have been compromised. Absa has not revealed if any other sensitive, financial data was involved in the data leak.

Man Who Worked At Local Research Institute For 10 Years Pleads Guilty To Conspiring To Steal Trade Secrets, Sell Them In China

A former Dublin, Ohio, man pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court today to conspiring to steal exosome-related trade secrets concerning the research, identification and treatment of a range of pediatric medical conditions. Yu Zhou, 50, also pleaded guilty to conspiring to commit wire fraud. Zhou admitted to conspiring to steal scientific trade secrets related to exosomes and exosome isolation from Nationwide Children’s Hospital’s Research Institute for his own personal financial gain in China. “Today’s plea underscores the Department of Justice’s commitment to protecting American research and trade secrets from those incentivized to steal them by Chinese Government programs,” said John C. Demers, Assistant Attorney General for National Security.  “China’s endemic efforts to rob, replicate and replace products that they do not have the ability to develop themselves will not go unchecked, and those who seek to profit from the theft of trade secrets will be held accountable.”

Federal Aviaton Administration Employee Arrested for Using Confidential Information for Attempted Extortion Scheme

WASHINGTON – Brian J. Booth, a 38-year-old Virginia resident, was arrested today and charged via criminal complaint with mail fraud for a scheme to use information stolen from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in an attempt to extort foreign officials and obtain payment for the information. According to Court records, Booth, an FAA employee, had access to information identifying persons who were previously authorized to exercise piloting or aircraft maintenance privileges in the United States, but who had their piloting or aircraft maintenance privileges revoked. Booth sent the names and addresses of certain of these individuals to the embassies of Germany, France, and the People’s Republic of China, demanding payment for the information. Booth does not appear to have obtained any money as a result of the scheme.

State Department Employee and Spouse Plead Guilty for Trafficking in Counterfeit Goods from U.S. Embassy

EUGENE, Ore.—A U.S. Department of State employee and his spouse pleaded guilty today to one count of conspiracy to traffic in counterfeit goods. The guilty pleas took place before United States District Judge Michael J. McShane. Both defendants will be sentenced on March 18, 2021. Acting Assistant Attorney General Brian C. Rabbitt of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Billy J. Williams of the District of Oregon, and Deputy Assistant Secretary Ricardo Colon of the Department of State Diplomatic Security Service (DSS), made the announcement. According to the plea agreements, Gene Leroy Thompson Jr., 54, was employed by the U.S. Department of State as an Information Programs Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Seoul, Korea, a position that required Thompson Jr. to maintain a security clearance. Guojiao “Becky” Zhang, 40, is married to Thompson Jr. and resided with him in Seoul.

Former Defense Department Official Arrested on Federal Charges of Taking Cash to Aid Contractor’s Request for $6.4 Million Payment

LOS ANGELES – Federal authorities have arrested a former Department of Defense civilian official on charges that he took $34,000 in illegal cash payments from a private contractor to support the contractor’s effort to obtain $6.4 million from the government in connection with construction projects on a Navy base in the African nation of Djibouti, the Justice Department announced today. Nizar Farhat, 63, of Palm Desert, who was a former construction manager based at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms, appeared this morning in United States District Court in Charleston, South Carolina, where a judge set his bond at $75,000. Farhat was arrested on Friday by FBI agents in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, where he has been staying in recent months. Farhat is charged in a two-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury on December 4 that charges him with being a public official receiving an illegal gratuity and being a public official receiving compensation from a private party for government services.

Rosemary Rogers: How fraudster former NAB chief of staff’s lavish life unravelled

A once high-ranking NAB employee and the woman who allegedly funnelled millions of dollars in kickbacks into her accounts referred to each other as “bestie” and “sister from another mother”. Court documents allege that Rosemary Rogers, the Chief of Staff to the NAB CEO, formed an “ongoing agreement” with Helen Rosamond to favour her events company the Human Group with work for the bank. In return Ms Rosamond allegedly organised small gifts for Rogers like a $1,600 hotel room at Melbourne’s Crown Casino in 2013. A year later this grew into an eight-person, $620,000 US holiday for Rogers’ family, court documents allege. Police allege Rogers then signed off on inflated invoices “without scrutiny” submitted by the events contractor and personally gained about $5.5m in eye-watering gifts including a car, a boat and overseas holidays.

Former bank branch manager sentenced to 3 years for embezzling funds from bank account of customer with dementia

U.S. Attorney Justin Herdman announced today that Audrey Ivers Whitworth, 26, of Rittman, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Donald C. Nugent to 36 months of prison and two years of supervised release after she pleaded guilty to one count of bank embezzlement and one count of aggravated identity theft. According to the indictment, from June 23, 2017, to August 5, 2019, while Whitworth was employed as a branch manager of a federally-insured bank, she embezzled approximately $84,000 by making unauthorized withdrawals from the account of an 84-year-old customer with dementia. “This defendant stole over $80,000 from an 84-year-old woman who was suffering with dementia, said U.S. Attorney Justin Herdman. “This conduct is, quite simply, reprehensible and the severity of the defendant’s actions are reflected in this three-year prison sentence. Since it was founded 150 years ago, the Justice Department has been committed to protecting the most vulnerable among us, and our elderly friends, neighbors and loved ones are no exception.”

This entry was posted on Monday, December 14th, 2020 at 3:17 pm. Both comments and pings are currently closed.