Japanese police forces have taken it upon themselves to issue a warrant for the arrest of a hacker who has the technical prowess to surf the web anonymously. What’s different about this warrant is that it’s the first time the police are actually offering a monetary reward for the successful apprehension and arrest of a hacker. This isn’t a measly $100 or something either. A massive 3 million yen ($36,000 USD) will be rewarded for the capture of this criminal.
The Japanese National Police Agency have been looking for this criminal for some time. They say that not only can the hacker browse anonymously, but he can use what’s called a “Syberian Post Office” method to make anonymous posts online. He is allegedly responsible for posting messages regarding plans for mass killings at an elementary school, which were wrongly blamed on four unfortunate individuals whose PCs were hacked. This case has become a bit of an embarrassment for the police force, which may be why they’ve decided to up the reward.
“Up until now this type of reward was reserved for cases involving crimes like murder and arson, but the policy has recently been changed to include more types of crimes,” an agency spokeswoman said on Thursday.
The reward was officially posted online last Wednesday the 16th, and included intrinsic details about the hacker’s skills. His abilities include knowledge of the programming language C# used to create the virus “iesys.exe”, and using anonymous methods to post provocative messages on public bulletin boards. The description also explains that he can use a “cross-site request forgery” to let him make these posts through innocent people’s computers.
The NPA says that its official reward policy has changed as of December 7th. It will now more likely offer rewards in investigations, and they can be applied to any crime. The maximum monetary limit is currently 3 million yen, but can be raised to 10 million ($119,818 USD) if the crime is serious enough.
With the recent massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, anonymous posts about elementary school mass killings should not go unnoticed, even in Japan. Catching this criminal could potentially save an irreplaceable number of innocent lives if the criminal was actually planning an attack in a public place. Hopefully a substantial reward will encourage the Japanese people to find this suspect and successfully get him behind bars. It will definitely do the rest of the world a little justice, after a tragedy such as this.[NetworkWorld]