Mikael Thalen, Prison Planet.com
April 15, 2015
A lawyer representing multiple law enforcement whistleblowers in Arkansas discovered surveillance malware after receiving an external hard drive from his clients’ department.
After requesting internal emails for the case, North Little Rock lawyer Matthew Campbell became suspicious when the Fort Smith Police Department decided to place the files on a hard drive and send them through Federal Express.
Campbell, who normally receives files via email, told the Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette that the department’s decision immediately raised red flags.
“Something didn’t add up in the way they approached it, so I sent it to my software guy first,” Campbell said. “I thought ‘I’m not plugging that into my computer,’ so I sent it to [a software expert] to inspect.”
After carefully inspecting the hard drive, security consultant Geoff Mueller discovered well known malware, capable of implanting backdoors and logging passwords.
“One would have kept my Internet active even if I tried to turn it off, one would have stolen any passwords that I entered in, and the other would have allowed the installation of other malicious software,” Campbell told the Arkansas Online.
“It’s not like these are my only clients, either. I’ve got all my client files in my computer. I don’t know what they were looking for, but just the fact that they would do it is pretty scary.”