Fraud: RAT Vignette

Remote Administration Tool (“RAT”): A RAT is a software application that allows a remote operator to control a system as if he has physical access to the system. It is typically undetectable to the user of the computer.

Inspired by Case No. 13-CR-00199-JVS:

You change in your room. You sleep in your room. You’re alone in your room. But nowadays the third statement isn’t always true. Imagine this: thousands of people watching you and what you do via the webcam on your laptop inside your room (ABC News “Insecam” 2014).

Cassidy Wolf, Miss Teen America 2013, found out the hard way when she discovered a college student had been watching her for a year. She received an e-mail in March 2013 containing photographs of her via her webcam with a list of demands. How is this possible? It’s simple. They find your e-mail address either from your LinkedIn profile, which typically is “” if your current employer is listed, or from one of your social media pages. Then, they send you a fraudulent e-mail that blends in with the rest of your inbox. It might contain a resumé if you work in HR, a party evite resembling a coworker, or be disguised in any of the thousands of ways you’d never guess. All you have to do is click on the e-mail and they simply watch you go about your day. Because nowadays why would criminals risk stalking you to an atm or following you home when they can watch you in the privacy of your own room undetected? With the premiere of FRAUD, audiences will learn that in today’s world we can’t trust anyone.

Click here to read how Jared James Abrahams gained access to dozens of womens’ computers (pg. 8).

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