Feeds

My BOFH is a bogus Baron

Mystery over ID of security consultant who posed as a Duke

Website security in corporate America

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Buckingham's passport was revoked in 2003.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.

Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL

More from The Register

next story
'Kim Kardashian snaps naked selfies with a BLACKBERRY'. *Twitterati gasps*
More alleged private, nude celeb pics appear online
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab
Be afeared, me hearties, these scoundrels be spying our signals
Snowden, Dotcom, throw bombs into NZ election campaign
Claim of tapped undersea cable refuted by Kiwi PM as Kim claims extradition plot
Freenode IRC users told to change passwords after securo-breach
Miscreants probably got in, you guys know the drill by now
THREE QUARTERS of Android mobes open to web page spy bug
Metasploit module gobbles KitKat SOP slop
BitTorrent's peer-to-peer chat app Bleep goes live as public alpha
A good day for privacy as invisble.im also reveals its approach to untraceable chats
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.