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Members of a Russian cybercrime forum attempted to frame respected security blogger Brian Krebs by mailing 13 bags of heroin to his home and alerting police.
Ten bags of a white powder were delivered to Krebs’s home after forum members clubbed together to buy bitcoins to purchase heroin from the online “drug market” Silk Road, a black market site only accessible via the Tor network.
A forum member known as “Flycracker” posted a message saying, ““Guys, it became known recently that Brian Krebs is a heroin addict and he desperately needs the smack, so we have started the “Helping Brian Fund”, and shortly we will create a bitcoin wallet called ‘Drugs for Krebs’ which we will use to buy him the purest heroin on the Silk Road. My friends, his withdrawal is very bad, let’s join forces to help the guy! We will save Brian from the acute heroin withdrawal and the world will get slightly better!”
Krebs said that this discussion took place on July 14, at which point he had already “established a presence” on the forum, allowing him to alert police in advance of his delivery. Krebs has previously been targeted with false calls to local police claiming that there was a hostage situation at his home – resulting in heavily armed officers surrounding the premises.
Flycracker and his colleagues raised two bitcoins – around $200 – and were seemingly able to buy 10 bags of heroin from a Silk Road supplier known as “Maestro”. Flycracker talked to other forum members to ensure a call was placed to law enforcement shortly after delivery.
“12 sacks of heroin [the seller gives 2 free sacks for a 10-sacks order] are on the road, can anyone make a call [to the police] from neighbors, with a record?,” Flycracker wrote. “Seller said the package will be delivered after 3 days, on Tuesday. If anyone calls then please say that drugs are hidden well.”
Krebs talked to other researchers and were able to verify that two bitcoins left Flycracker’s wallet and entered one controlled by those who maintain the Silk Road marketplace. Krebs contacted law enforcement before the delivery, and was met by a police officer when the package arrived.
“Without actually having the substance tested at a lab, I can’t say for certain whether this is talcum powder or the real thing,” Krebs said. “The cop that came to collect the package said he had a drug field test kit in his squad car but then discovered he was out of the heroin tests (I’m not sure what that says about the heroin problem in Northern Virginia, but I digress). Frankly, I’m willing to give the seller the benefit of the doubt, given that Maestro currently has glowing feedback from almost 100 other buyers on Silk Road.”
Author Rob Waugh /Rob Waugh, WeLiveSecurity/
Author Rob Waugh, We Live Security