[ISN] Police hold 7 for hacking networks

From: InfoSec News (alerts@private)
Date: Thu Mar 22 2007 - 23:54:25 PST


Bacolod City, Philippines  	
March 23, 2007

Seven persons are being held by the police for questioning after they 
were found in the act of hacking the networks during a major offensive 
launched by joint law enforcement units in Metro Manila recently.

The hackers were found to have illegally intruded into 2,500 private 
telecommunication networks in the Philippines, United States of America, 
Canada, Australia and three European countries.

The campaign was jointly spearheaded by the Directorate for 
Investigation and Detective Management, Criminal Investigation and 
Detection Group and the National Capital Region Police Office, a press 
release from the CIDG in Camp Crame said yesterday.

Philippine National Police Chief Oscar Calderon said he ordered the 
crackdown after complaints of massive network intrusion originating from 
Metro Manila piled up in his office from corporate users here and 

Among those hardest hit was American Telephone and Telegraph which 
reported a net loss of over $38 million in the past two years as a 
result of this "hacking" activity by Filipino hackers.

"I have formed a Task Force to address this problem to be led by DIDM 
Director, P/Director Geary Barias to conduct a deeper probe into these 
incidents and apply the full force of the law against those responsible 
for these illegal activities." Calderon said.

A joint investigation conducted by the fraud experts from the US and the 
Philippines found sufficient evidence and information leading to the 
identification of the hackers and their locations, the press release 

Barias reported that among those nabbed was 34-year-old Mahmoud Sahyeh 
Ogcah Musher, alias Mahmoud Nuseir, a Jordanian national who was 
arrested in September 2002 and presented by President Gloria Arroyo.

Mahmoud was allegedly a head of a local hacking ring, responsible for 
hacking into PLDT telecommunication systems to gain unlawful access and 
sell the connection for a fee to an international syndicates involved in 
illegal call reselling operations. He has also linked Mahmoud to an 
international cyber terrorist group providing anonymous communications 
links for their partisans to avoid detection and monitoring by lawful 

Seized during the raids were two computer systems, various 
telecommunication equipment and a large cache of incriminating documents 
indicating the networks they have attacked and the members of their 
community in Metro Manila and abroad, the press release added.* 

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