A group of hackers was identified by the FBI while trying to sale a mockup of the XBox One for $5,000.
A group of men was accused of running a hacking campaign that lasted at least three years and which hit the gaming industry to steal intellectual properties.
Dylan Wheeler, 19, of Perth said in an interview recently released that he was a member of the group and that he is one of the two unnamed men, which were mentioned in the indictment that referred him with his online nicknames, “SuperDae” used by the man on Twitter.
In a first time the man admitted to have violated the developer networks affiliated to Sony and Microsoft, but later he declared himself innocent.
The indictment describes the campaign run by the team of hackers to steal the source code for Microsoft’s XBox One, Apache helicopter simulation software designed for the U.S. Army and intellectual property from other popular companies of gaming industry, including Activision, Epic Games and Valve Corp..
Wheeler has been known by Australian authorities since May 2013 when he was charged for the same cyber crime, he is scheduled for a hearing in Perth Children’s Court on January 27th and it seems that the US Government will allow Australia to prosecute the youngster.
Wheeler is charged of various crimes, including the sale of a homemade mockup of XBox One many months before the official sale of the product was announced by the Microsoft.
Wheeler and the other four members of the hacking team are accused of breaching Microsoft’s Game Developer Network Portal, used by the development community to share and contribute to pre-release tools and software. The group also hacked the PartnerNet, a software platform for game development, in all the attacks, they syphoned sensitive data and intellectual property for XBox One using previous gathered login credentials.
The XBox One, was referred to by its code-name “Durango” and was accessed by the group which coordinated the activities online communicating over Skype and instant messenger.
“Wheeler confirmed the group had amassed enough documentation and code to build a mockup of an Xbox One together using off-the-shelf hardware components.”
Another member of the team mentioned in the indictment, Nathan Leroux, 20, of Bowie, Maryland, used the gathered information to assemble the device with components bought from NewEgg.com.
Wheeler revealed that someone from a group called Team Xecutor expressed a great interest in buying the prototype was built by the team.
On August 9th, 2012, someone identified in the indictment as “Person A” went to Leroux’s residence in Maryland and picked up the device to send the device to an address in the Seychelles, but as explained by Wheeler the package never arrived to destination.
“That was like a red flag to us,” he said.
Person A gave the assembled Durango system to the FBI, which investigated on the activity of the Wheeler’s group by tapping communication over Skype.
“The FBI actually bought the Durango,” Wheeler said.
The remaining members of the group charged in the indictment are Sanadodeh Nesheiwat, 28, of Washington, New Jersey; David Pokora, 22, of Mississauga, Ontario, Canada; and Austin Alcala, 18, of McCordsville, Indiana.
Pokora and Nesheiwat pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit computer fraud and copyright infringement and are scheduled for sentencing on Jan. 13, according to a news release from the U.S. Department of Justice.