Federal judge rejects FBI request to hack alleged fraudster

Share this article:

A federal magistrate judge in Houston denied the FBI a special warrant, which would allow the agency to install surveillance software on an alleged fraudster's computer.

The FBI requested the “Rule 41 search and seizure warrant” after an unknown individual attempted to fraudulently wire funds from a Texas bank.

On Monday, Judge Stephen Smith rejected the application saying there was inadequate evidence that the alleged fraudster's computer was in the United States.

The FBI also failed to show that steps to minimize the “over-collection” of data would be taken, the court order said.

The surveillance software that the FBI wanted to install would be capable of searching the computer's hard drive, activating its camera to take photos of the alleged fraudster and capturing the coordinates of the computer's location.  

Share this article:

Sign up to our newsletters

More in News

Cyber Command tests gov't collaboration in wake of attacks

The two-week exercise, "Cyber Guard 14-1," was completed this month.

Text message spammer settles charges filed by FTC

Text message spammer settles charges filed by FTC

Rishab Verma and his company agreed to settle charges filed by the FTC that Verma sent millions of spam text messages that deceitfully promised free merchandise.

Rhode Island hospital to pay $150K for past data breach

More than 12,000 patients' personal and health information was compromised in a breach at The Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island.