Feeds

Feds use Instagram pic of delicious steak dinner to nab ID thieves

A moment on the lips, a long time in prison?

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

It's long been said that you are what you eat. Now American cops have used that claim to track down two people who have just pleaded guilty to identity theft.

It is reportedly the first time an Instagram pic has been used in a federal felony complaint.

The suspects were tracked by the IRS after one of them apparently used Instagram to capture a picture of their (admittedly yummy-looking) steak with a side of mac-and-cheese.

Nathaniel Troy Maye, 44, from Harlem, New York and Tiwanna Tenise Thomason, 39, from Miramar, are now facing a spell in prison along with a hefty fine after pleading guilty to aggravated identity theft and possession of unauthorised access devices. The pair will be sentenced in July after entering their pleas on Friday in federal court in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Before steak-gate, the US tax authorities were on the trail of a person claiming to have 700,000 fake identities on sale, but they had little clue how they would go about tracking him down.

An unnamed witness alleged the man went by the name of Troy and was in a relationship with Thomason.

Louis Babino, a special agent with the IRS criminal investigation unit, told the Sun Sentinel that the witness then arranged a lunch with the pair at Morton's steakhouse, where the couple agreed to hand over a flash drive packed with 50 identities which could potentially be used to file fake tax returns.

Federal agents then looked through the drive, which contained hidden links to the name Troy Maye, which was also used as an Instagram handle.

They looked at the Instagram page and found a picture of the meal the trio shared along with the tag "Morton's", allowing detectives to build a case against them.

IRS agents then swooped in and arrested Maye and Thomason at their apartment, where they found two more flash drives containing somewhere in the region of 55,000 fake identities.

Thomason reportedly cried as she told the judge: "I was foolish, I was stupid."

Troy Maye's Instagram page is closed but still bears the slogan: "Good things will come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle!" ®

Reducing security risks from open source software

More from The Register

next story
Carlos: Slim your working week to just three days of toil
'Midas World' vision suggests you retire later, watch more tellie and buy more stuff
Motorist 'thought car had caught fire' as Adele track came on stereo
'FIRE' caption on dashboard prompts dunderheaded hard shoulder halt
Brit Rockall adventurer poised to quit islet
Occupation records broken, champagne corks popped
Accused! Yahoo! exec! SUES! her! accuser!, says! sex! harassment! never! happened!
Allegations were for 'financial gain', countersuit claims
Yahoo! Japan! launches! service! for! the! dead!
If you're reading this email, I am no longer alive
Plucky Rockall podule man back on (proper) dry land
Bold, barmy Brit adventurer Nick Hancock escapes North Atlantic islet
NSA man: 'Tell me about your Turkish connections'
Spooks ask Dabbsy to suggest a nice hotel with pool
Japanese artist cuffed for disseminating 3D ladyparts files
Printable genitalia fall foul of 'obscene material' laws
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.