'Vile' Gang Duo Breaches Police Database, Impersonates Officers in Extortion Gambit'Vile' Gang Duo Breaches Police Database, Impersonates Officers in Extortion Gambit
Two gang members are being charged for allegedly threatening to release personal information and impersonating law enforcement in an effort to dox victims.
March 15, 2023
Two individuals, belonging to a crime group known as "Vile," are being charged with wire fraud and conspiracy to commit computer intrusions after allegedly breaching a law enforcement database and using stolen data to blackmail their victims. Members of the group threatened to release their personal information on public websites.
According to a press release published on March 14 from the US Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of New York, Sagar Steven Singh (19) and Nicholas Ceraolo (25) used the stolen password of a police officer to gain access into a database containing records of narcotics, currency seizures, and intelligence reports. It took the perpetrators only one day to begin extorting the subjects of the reports, threatening to harm their family members if they weren't provided with the victim's personal information, such as their Social Security numbers and home addresses, or payment to keep the information off of websites, an effort known as doxxing.
In addition to this, Singh used a foreign law enforcement officer's email address to contact social media companies for information on their users, purporting to need it for police investigations. Known as emergency requests, these are requests that governments can make to social media companies for user information; there are thousands made to companies every year. In fact, 75% of the time it was asked, Meta, formerly known as Facebook, gave up the requested information.
"As alleged, the defendants shamed, intimidated, and extorted others online. This Office will not tolerate those who impersonate law enforcement officers and misuse the public safety infrastructure that exists to protect our citizens," stated United States Attorney Breon Peace in the press release. Both defendants face up to five years in prison, and Ceraolo faces up to 20 years.
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