Confessions of a Professional Cyber Stalker presented at Defcon 2015

by Ken Westin,

Summary : For several years I developed and utilized various technologies and methods to track criminals leading to at least two dozen convictions. In the process of recovering stolen devices, larger crimes would be uncovered including drugs, theft rings, stolen cars, even a violent car jacking. Much of the evidence in these cases would be collected by stolen devices themselves, such as network information, photos captured from laptops and cell phones, but often times there was additional data that would need to be gathered for a conviction. In this presentation I will walk through actual real cases and discuss in depth the technologies used and additional processes I went through utilizing open source data and other methods to target criminals. I will also discuss how these same tools and methods can be used against the innocent and steps users and developers can take to better protect privacy.
In this presentation here are a few examples of cases I worked on which I will reveal details of:
How a theft ring targeting Portland, Oregon schools was unveiled leading to multiple convictions
How I tracked and recovered $9K worth of stolen camera equipment sold multiple times a year after it was stolen based on data extracted from images online
How mobile phones stolen from a wireless store were tracked leading to the arrest of a theft ring, leading to the conviction of six people and the recovery of a stolen car
Embedding of custom designed trojan for thermal imaging devices for theft tracking and export controls
Tracking of a stolen flash drive to a university computer lab and correlation of security camera and student access ID cards
Tracking a stolen laptop across state lines and how I gathered mountains of evidence in another theft ring case
Several other cases….