There are so many crazy things happening in the world that we tend to forget how close these mad things are to us. We always need to be extra cautious in almost everything that we do, and who we trust. Never underestimate the human potential for wrongdoings and bad deeds. Desperation causes people to make bad choices. No matter how desperate you are for riches, always know that if it is meant to be, it will be. Do not play with luck and fate, because luck will find you when it is your chosen time. Read further to find out how a US lottery security boss was charged with fixing a draw.
A former security boss of a lottery in the US has been charged with fraud after he allegedly hacked the computer that chooses the winning numbers.
A man by the name of Eddie Raymond Tipton was the security director for the Multi-State Lottery Association at the time when he was arrested in January by the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigations.
Prosecutors have said that he was caught on CCTV buying the winning ticket over the counter. The prize was a staggering amount of $14.3 million, which was never claimed.
Mr. Tipton, however, denies all charges. He told officers that the cameras were turned off; it was old footage, even though the camera points at the viewer. It is alleged that the security camera in the lottery room had stopped recording.
Citing court papers filed by prosecutors in this tricky case, the Des Moines Register said that the 51-year-old “may have inserted a thumb drive into a highly locked-down computer that’s supposed to generate the random numbers used to determine particular lottery winners.”
The offline computer is kept safe in a glass room and in theory the only people who have access to it, are two people at the same time. It is also constantly monitored by video cameras.
It is alleged that Mr. Tipton used his position as security director to change the video camera settings and record only one second in every minute. This clever hack would have given him enough time to enter the room and plug a thumb drive into the computer.
According to prosecutors, what was on that drive was a rootkit. A rootkit is a stealthy computer program designed to do a specific task, and in this case, then erase itself.
This sounds like something out of a James Bond film! Can you believe that people have the guts out there to do things like this that can land them in prison for years?
The task of the rootkit was to predetermine the winning lottery numbers for the draw that Mr. Tipton was supposed to buy the winning ticket for.
Mike McLaughlin, a senior analyst at computer security company First Base, said that the allegation might sound far-fetched, but indeed plausible.
Mike told reporters of the BBC: “It is entirely possible to code a rootkit on a USB drive which could interfere with software then delete itself after the job has been accomplished, leaving no trace behind that any such thing ever happened.” He added further, “It would only take a second to run once plugged in. However, this can leave traces on the infected machine if you know where to look.”
As a member of staff, Mr. Tipton was not allowed to win the lottery himself. We guess you could say that he also could have been “Tipped-off” to do something like this.
The court filings suggest that there was an attempt to claim the prize on record, just hours before it was actually scheduled to expire by a company incorporated in Belize.
If Mr. Tipton is found guilty of this fraudulent and foolish act, he will face five years in prison and fine of over $7,500.
We’d say that it is truly not worth it. If it's Lady Luck's time to smile on you, then let it be. As soon as you interfere with the higher powers of luck, disaster strikes.
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