FBI’s Cyber Task Force Makes Arrest in Computer Intrusion Case
On April 8, 2015, members of the Jackson FBI’s Cyber Task Force arrested Thomas A. Wotring, age 28, without incident, at a business on Martin Bluff Road in Gautier, Mississippi, with assistance provided by the Gautier Police Department. The arrest was made pursuant to an indictment and arrest warrant issued by a grand jury in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi.
According to the indictment, Wotring accessed a protected computer on or about July 11, 2012, without authorization, and thereby obtained information for purposes of commercial advantage and private financial gain, in violation of Title 18, U.S. Code, Section 1030(a)(2) and (c)(2)(B).
Donald Alway, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Mississippi, said, “The FBI’s Cyber Task Force program enhances collaboration and integrates operations among the partner agencies against cyber terrorists, who aim to exploit vulnerabilities in critical infrastructure control systems, and against financially motivated criminals, who steal money, identities, and intellectual trade secrets. By joining together, these federal, state, and local agencies serve as an effective deterrent to cyber criminals.”
Wotring made an initial appearance before United States Magistrate Judge Robert H. Walker on April 9, 2015. He was released on a $25,000 bond, pending trial of this matter, which is scheduled for May 11, 2015 in Gulfport, Mississippi.
The Jackson FBI Cyber Task Force is made up of FBI special agents and task force officers from the Mississippi Office of Attorney General, the Mississippi Office of Homeland Security, and the Madison Police Department. There are Cyber Task Forces (CTFs) in all of the FBI’s 56 field offices that focus exclusively on cyber security threats. Within each field office territory, the CTF synchronizes domestic cyber threat investigations in the local community through information sharing, incident response, and joint enforcement and intelligence actions. To its partner agencies, the Cyber Task Force Program provides real-time, classified reporting, training opportunities, and access to a broad scope of resources, including vehicles, communication tools, and computer equipment.
The public is reminded that, as in any criminal case, a person is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. The charges filed merely contain allegations of criminal conduct.