The US Department of Justice has charged Amad Umar Agha, 22, Firas Dardar, 27, and Peter Romar, 36, for multiple attacks targeting websites and social media platforms of US military and media agencies. The three allegedy are members of the pro-Assad Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) hacking group.
The FBI also added Agha and Dardar to its Cyber’s Most Wanted list, and is offering a $100,000 reward for details leading to the arrests of the two.
According to the criminal complaints, Agha and Dardar waged phishing attacks starting in 2011 to break into privileged accounts and systems, posing an official entity providing sensitive information. Other hacking scams by the three conspirators include cyber-extortion targeting US businesses, the Twitter account hack of a US media organization, and the hacking and defacing a US Marine Corps recruiting website.
Law enforcement agencies including the Washington Field Office (WFO), the NASA Office of the Inspector General, and the Department of State Bureau of Diplomatic Security, are all investigating the case.
“As a result of a thorough cyber investigation, FBI agents and analysts identified the perpetrators and now continue to work with our domestic and international partners to ensure these individuals face justice in the United States,” said WFO Assistant Director in Charge Paul M. Abbate.
See more on this story in the FBI’s announcement.