Interpol chief has Facebook identity stolen

Criminals use bogus ID to research police targets

He's one of the most powerful people in world policing, but on Facebook Interpol chief Ronald K. Noble is just as vulnerable to identity theft as anyone else.

At last week's inagural Interpol Information Security Conference in Hong Kong, secretary general Noble revealed that criminals had set up two accounts impersonating him on the networking site during this summer's high-profile global dragnet, 'Operation Infra-Red'.

The fraud was discovered only recently by Interpol's Security Incident Response Team.

"One of the impersonators was using this profile to obtain information on fugitives targeted during our recent Operation Infra Red," Noble told delegates.

Operation Infra-Red, which took place between May and July of this year, was a global, Interpol-led operation to crack down on named criminal fugitives accused of murder, paedophilia, fraud, corruption, drug trafficking and money laundering, who had fled national jurisdictions. The operation led to 130 arrests.

Noble is not believed to have had a professional profile on Facebook although his organisation does.

"Cybercrime is emerging as a very concrete threat. Considering the anonymity of cyberspace, it may in fact be one of the most dangerous criminal threats we will ever face," Noble was quoted as saying.

Although Facebook itself wasn't compromised in any way, the example cited by the Interpol head hinges on the ease with which the criminals were able to forge his identity without challenge. This is a problem both Facebook, and that other giant of social media, Twitter, have been grappling with.

Even for non-VIPs using real accounts, Facebook is a controversial place to put certain types of data. Last week, a study found that many US SMEs had suffered security problems they blamed on employee interest in the site.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags FacebookinterpolPersonal Tech

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John E Dunn

Techworld
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?