Cyber-Crime: Israeli tried to sell secrets on dark web for $50 million

A 38 year old Israeli worker for a cyber espionage firm is accused of stealing company secrets and attempting to sell them on the dark web.

July 5, 2018 11:28
1 minute read.
HACKERS AND cybersecurity

HACKERS AND cybersecurity. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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An Israeli who worked at a cyber espionage firm was accused of stealing company secrets and attempting to sell them on the dark web for $50 million.

The Cyber Division in the State Attorney's Office indicted a 38-year-old former worker of NSO Group on Thursday for allegedly damaging private assets in a manner that would jeopardize state security interests and theft.

The man, a former programmer for NSO Group, an Israeli company dealing mostly in cyber espionage, was being fired from the company. When he realized that, he allegedly stole software and professional information used by NSO Group and offered to sell them on the dark web for $50 million.

NSO Group, the creator of the Pegasus spy software, is valued to be worth $90 million. As the firm might unknowingly offer services and products to nations and companies that might damage Israeli national security interests, it is required to get approval from the Ministry of Security for any transaction it is involved in.

The person who was in touch with the alleged thief contacted NSO Group and the company turned to the police for help. The worker was arrested in early June and the deal was not carried out.

The worker asked to be paid in cryptocurrencies, which would keep the illegal deal anonymous.

The State Attorney's Office claimed that "the accused committed these crimes out of greed, despite knowing, even if he shut his eyes from seeing it, that his crimes might damage state security and lead to the collapse of a firm employing 500 workers."

The dark web is online content not indexed by search engine and to view it a user must install special software. While the term deep web describes content not covered by search engines, the two terms are not the same, with the dark web being a part of the deep web.

The most famous example of illegal sales using the dark net is "Silk Road," an online platform that sold illegal drugs between 2011 and 2013, when it was shut down.

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