Romanian man to be charged in Blaster release

A Romanian man will be charged with violating that country's cybercrime laws by releasing a version of the W32.Blaster Internet worm, according to a source involved in the investigation.

Dan Sumitru Ciobanu of Iasi, Romania may face up to 10 years in prison for releasing the Blaster-F worm variant, according to Mihai Radu of Softwin SRL, a computer security company in Bucharest, Romania.

Elena Dinu, a spokeswoman for the Prosecutors Office attached to the Supreme Court of Justice in Bucharest, declined to comment on the case and referred questions to officials in Iasi.

Authorities in Iasi were not available for comment Wednesday afternoon.

Ciobanu will be accused of violating articles 45 and 46 of Law 161, a tough new cybercrime law enacted this year, Radu said, reading from a draft statement by Iasi authorities scheduled for release on Thursday.

Those articles cover actions that "cause a grave perturbance to the functioning of a computer system" and "unauthorized possession of a computer program especially made to create a grave perturbance to a computer system," Radu said.

Ciobanu was arrested last week and initially denied having released the worm. However, he eventually acknowledged releasing the worm, saying the release occurred by accident as he was testing it on a home computer connected to the Internet, according to the statement.

However, authorities are still scrambling to prove that the worm variant he released has infected any computers in his own country, according to Radu.

Softwin researchers are working with law enforcement officials in Iasi to track virus traffic from Ciobanu's computer to machines infected with Blaster-F. So far, they have found infected machines in Belgium and The Netherlands, but none in Romania, he said.

The outcome of that investigation may determine whether 24 year-old Ciobanu is charged with merely attempting to cause damage to computer systems or actually causing damage, he said.

Softwin is also helping Iasi authorities analyze the contents of three computer hard drives in the case, Radu said. Two of those were seized from Ciobanu's home and one from a computer at the photo lab where he worked.

A copy of the original virus was found on the hard drive from Ciobanu's work. Of the two drives taken from his home, one had been erased and reformatted and the other was unreadable because of "errors," Radu said.

Ciobanu's case closely resembles that of Minnesota teenager, Jeffrey Parson, who was arrested in August for creating and releasing the Blaster-B variant.

Like Parson, Ciobanu's alleged decision to use his online nickname, enbiei, for the virus file was integral to his capture, Radu said.

"Enbiei," a phoneticized version of NBA, the National Basketball Association in the U.S., Radu said.

Romanian authorities may try to make an example out of Ciobanu, Radu said. The Blaster-F case is the second cybercrime case to surface since the enactment of the cybercrime law and there is fear that Romania will be associated with hackers and computer crime, he said.

Prosecutors will likely seek to have Ciobanu serve some jail time, though probably less than the maximum sentence of 10 years, Radu said.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Paul Roberts

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?