Apr 18, 2014

    Teen arrested for stealing tax data via Heartbleed


    FEDERAL police said on Wednesday they have arrested and charged a 19-year-old man with the theft of 900 Canadian taxpayers' data, which was made vulnerable by the "Heartbleed" bug.

    The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) said Stephen Arthuro Solis-Reyes was arrested at his London, Ontario, home on Tuesday without incident.

    He was scheduled to appear in court yesterday to face charges of mischief and unauthorised use of a computer to steal data from the Canada Revenue Agency's (CRA's) website.

    "It is believed that Solis-Reyes was able to extract private information held by the CRA by exploiting the security vulnerability known as the Heartbleed Bug," the RCMP said in a statement.

    The suspect was tracked down within four days after what CRA Assistant Commissioner Gilles Michaud had described as a serious security breach.

    Police said computer equipment was seized at the suspect's home, and that the investigation is still ongoing.

    The Canada Revenue Agency said 900 social insurance numbers - personal nine-digit codes required for working or accessing government benefits in Canada - had been stolen last week by "someone exploiting the Heartbleed vulnerability". Its website was shuttered for several days over concerns about the Heartbleed bug.

    It was rebooted over the weekend after a patch was installed.

    The recently discovered flaw in online data-scrambling software OpenSSL allows hackers to eavesdrop on online communications, steal data, impersonate websites and unlock encrypted data.

    OpenSSL is commonly used to protect passwords, credit card numbers and other data sent via the Internet.