Hacker Hides Malware Code on Cat’s Collar

In a recent twist that mirrors the the plot of the movie Men In Black, Japanese police have recovered a memory card on the collar of a stray cat that contains clues left by a particularly notorious hacker who claims to have created the “remote control virus.”

“On New Year’s Day, a string of riddles sent via email to Japanese media outlets eventually led to the cat, who apparently lived on an island near Tokyo,” writes PCMag.com’s Max Eddy. “The memory card carried by the cat allegedly contained information about iesys.exe, also known as the ‘remote control virus,’ which is used to take control of infected computers.”

“The development is the latest in a bizarre investigation that has previously seen months of threats made against a number of venues — including a school and a kindergarten attended by grandchildren of Emperor Akihito — from computers around the country,” AFP reports. “The National Police Agency was embarrassed after it emerged that officers had extracted ‘confessions’ from four people who had nothing to do with sending the threatening messages.”

“It turned out that the suspects’ computers had indeed been infected with the ‘remote control virus,’ which let the operator remotely email and post threats from other people’s computers, masking the authentic source of the malicious messages,” writes Tech News Daily’s Ben Weitzenkorn.

The National Police Agency has offered a bounty of 3 million Yen for information leading to the hacker’s arrest. “It’s the first time that a bounty has been offered for cybercrime in Japan, and it reflects how frustrated the NPA has been in its investigation,” writes Wired’s Ian Steadman.

Jeff Goldman
Jeff Goldman
Jeff Goldman has been a technology journalist for more than 20 years and an eSecurity Planet contributor since 2009.

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