Feeds

My BOFH is a bogus Baron

Mystery over ID of security consultant who posed as a Duke

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Mystery surrounds the identity of a security consultant who posed as a peer of the realm throughout his adult life.

The bogus aristocrat lived for 23 years as Christopher Edward, Earl of Buckingham1, marrying under this false name and fathering two children. He even promised his oldest son that one day he would inherit a peerage.

But the impostor's cover was blown after checks by the Passport Agency revealed he had stolen the identity of Christopher Edward Buckingham, an infant who died aged just eight months, in 1963. The ruse was copied from one employed by the assassin in Frederick Forsyth's novel The Day of the Jackal. Unlike that character "Buckingham" maintained an unremarkable life working as an IT security consultant for a Swiss insurance firm since 2001, The Times reports.

Buckingham's passport was revoked in 2003. He was arrested in January after checks by an alert immigration official in Calais showed he was traveling under fraudulent documentation. Buckingham was allowed to travel back to the UK but was arrested by police as soon as he docked in Dover.

"Buckingham" was charged with making a false passport application and pleaded guilty to the offence at a hearing a Canterbury Crown Court last month. He has steadfastly refused to reveal his true identity despite the added risk of a jail term this might bring. He told his former wife that his parents died in a plane crash in Egypt in 1982, shortly before the pair met in Germany. The couple divorced in 1997.

DNA and fingerprint checks on Buckingham have drawn a blank. Strict privacy laws in Switzerland have hampered checks in the country, where Buckingham is believed to have a safety deposit box. Buckingham owns a house in Northampton and is not short of a bob or two but little else is known about him, least of all his true identity.

Police hoping to uncover Buckingham's true identity have released a picture of him, taken in the '80s, to the media in the hopes that someone might come forward to identify him. ®

1 The title of Earl of Buckingham has been extinct since 1687 after the death of the second Duke who "had a reputation for debauchery and killed his mistress’s husband in a duel", The Times reports.

Bootnote

And, yes, we know a Duke, a Baron and a Lord are not neccessarily the same thing. But in the Vulture Central style book, alliteration comes before aristo.

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
14 antivirus apps found to have security problems
Vendors just don't care, says researcher, after finding basic boo-boos in security software
'Things' on the Internet-of-things have 25 vulnerabilities apiece
Leaking sprinklers, overheated thermostats and picked locks all online
Only '3% of web servers in top corps' fully fixed after Heartbleed snafu
Just slapping a patched OpenSSL on a machine ain't going to cut it, we're told
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Secure microkernel that uses maths to be 'bug free' goes open source
Hacker-repelling, drone-protecting code will soon be yours to tweak as you see fit
Israel's Iron Dome missile tech stolen by Chinese hackers
Corporate raiders Comment Crew fingered for attacks
Roll out the welcome mat to hackers and crackers
Security chap pens guide to bug bounty programs that won't fail like Yahoo!'s
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.