Two Years for Man Who Used RATs to Spy on Women and Children

A Nottingham man has been jailed for over two years after using remote access trojans (RATs) and other cybercrime tools to spy on women and children.

Robert Davies, 32, is said to have built a sizeable collection of indecent images of his victims, which included at least one teenage girl whom he spied on via a hacked webcam.

Officers from the National Crime Agency (NCA) arrested Davies three times between November 2019 and August 2021 before he was finally brought before a court in September last year.

Davies pleaded guilty to 24 Computer Misuse Act offences, voyeurism, three counts of possessing indecent images of children (IIOC), making IIOC and possessing extreme pornographic images and was handed down a 26-month sentence yesterday at Nottingham Crown Court.

The cyber-voyeur is said to have used RATs to gain remote access to his victims’ machines and devices, where he searched for and exfiltrated compromising images or accessed the webcam function.

He used fake profiles on messaging apps to make initial contact with his targets and persuade them to download malicious links leading to the RAT. Davies also used crypters to help disguise the malware from anti-virus tools, the NCA said.

The agency said he was also a customer of weleakinfo, a site that sells stolen log-ins.

Although Davies is said to have had 27 images and videos of children on his computer, the NCA claimed officers visited over 30 victims during their investigation.

Andrew Shorrock, operations manager from the NCA’s National Cyber Crime Unit, claimed Davies had amassed a cybercrime toolkit.

“Not only was he using these tools to break into people’s devices, he was using them to spy on his unsuspecting victims and to steal naked images of them for his own sexual gratification,” he added.

“Increasing the barrier of entry into cybercrime by reducing the availability of, and accessibility to, off-the-shelf tools is a key focus for the NCA. We work with a range of partners to target both criminals and their infrastructure, to ultimately disrupt and deter this type of offending.

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