Cyber Criminals Hate Brian Krebs So Much They Sent Heroin and SWAT Teams to His Home
If you have the right kind of knowledge, enough free time, and a penchant for misanthropy, the internet can provide the means to make someone’s life really fucking miserable. A perfect example is last week’s case of internet security journalist Brian Krebs being sent a package of heroin in an attempt to frame him for a drugs charge.
Krebs has become perhaps one of the most reviled enemies of the cyber-underworld, but I suppose that was always bound to happen after he made it his life’s work to expose the web’s elusive cyber criminals and credit card fraudsters. Unfortunately for our digital Dick Tracy, the community he targets have a wealth of resources that they can use to mess with him in response—stuff that far surpasses posting passive-aggressive tweets or signing him up to tedious fashion PR email blasts.
Alleged Russian credit card fraudster—or “carder,” as they’re known to people who know about them—MUCACC1 (a.k.a. “Fly”), ordered a gram of heroin to be sent to Krebs’ home and faked a phone call from one of his neighbors to tip off the police. But, like something out of a 2.0 Douglas Adams novel, Krebs had already infiltrated Fly’s private carding community forum and found the post detailing his plan. It turned out that Fly had managed to raise $200-worth of Bitcoins from other like-minded Brian-haters to purchase the drugs from the deep-web black market Silk Road.
And, as you might have guessed from the financial support he received, that wasn’t the first run-in Brian Krebs has had with the nefarious inhabitants of the underweb. Throughout his ten years of writing about internet security and fraud, he’s been the target of constant harassment from various shady online communities.
His website is frequently the target of attacks that disrupt his business as an independent journalist, $20,000 of credit was fraudulently taken out in his name to shake him up financially, and he was once a victim of SWATing, where a phoney distress call is made from your address so that a SWAT team tears up to your house and waves their guns in your face—a gradually escalating pattern of harassment all inflicted on Krebs because of his chosen line of work.
I spoke to Fly, the heroin sting ringleader, in an obscure instant messaging chat room about planting drugs, ordering assassinations from the net, and why he hates Brian Krebs so much.
Brian Krebs. (Photo via)
VICE: Hi, Fly. Why did you attempt to frame Brian Krebs with a package of heroin?
Fly: You could say it was just for lulz. Besides, he pays for his lunch with the money that we [carders] are losing, using criminal techniques. If you want to write about crime, be honest. If you’re not honest, you will have to pay. We didn’t invite him to our forum. He became a celebrity by putting the spotlight on Russian carding. All serious carders are against the popularization of carding. The less people, the better—we don’t want to create new criminals. And he’s popularizing it.