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A British man accused of helping a notorious ransomware crew is headed to prison. German prosecutors probe a cyberattack as a negligent homicide. And the Justice Department is trying to keep pace with dark web drug markets. This is CyberScoop for Tuesday, September 22.

A ‘Dark Overlord’ hacker heads to prison

A U.K. man who phoned family members of ransomware victims and threatened to ruin their lives unless they paid a digital extortion fee is headed to prison. Nathan Wyatt, 39, was sentenced to five years in U.S. federal prison Monday in connection with a string of ransomware attacks against four health care companies in Missouri. Wyatt’s crew, known as The Dark Overlord, is best known for breaches at Netflix and New York City law firms. In this case, though, Wyatt helped scammers take more than a million dollars by threatening victims’ families by phone. Jeff Stone had the story first.

A Message From AWS Educate

With over 1,500 institutions and hundreds of thousands of students who use AWS Educate, we wanted to take you on a trip around the world and highlight how students are learning and innovating with the cloud. Learn more.

A hacking homicide investigation

After a patient in Germany was turned away from a hospital because of a ransomware attack, and later died, German prosecutors are treating it as a potential “negligent homicide,” according to multiple local media reports. Analysts say, if confirmed, it would be the first documented case of a death stemming, directly or indirectly, from a cyberattack. The case is a visceral reminder of the safety implications of vulnerable software at hospitals. If WannaCry was a wakeup call, so too is this incident. Sean Lyngaas breaks it down.

Edward Snowden agrees to turn over book proceeds

The Department of Justice hasn't gotten very far with its criminal case against Edward Snowden for his leaks of classified NSA documents, but its civil suit against the former intelligence agency contractor has been proceeding in a Virginia federal court. In new documents, Snowden's lawyers agreed that he will turn over more than $5 million in earnings related to his book, "Permanent Record" and the speeches he's given since 2014. A judge had sided with the feds late last year on the forfeiture. Snowden, of course, remains in Russia — and it's unclear where he's keeping the money. Joe Warminsky has the court documents.

International dark-web crackdown claims 179 arrests

U.S. and European law enforcement agencies on Tuesday announced a major bust of alleged dark-web vendors dealing opioids. More than two-thirds of the arrests occurred in the U.S., where the opioid pandemic has continued to rage alongside the coronavirus pandemic. The alleged drug dealers are accused of advertising on infamous dark-web sites such as AlphaBay and Dream. It’s the latest in a string of dark-web sting operations. Sean has more.

Election security challenges, explained

High-profile federal agencies have big roles in securing elections, but much of the work is done at the state and local level. In a special report on election security, the StateScoop team dives into the broad set of challenges that go with making sure people can cast their votes and have them counted. Topics include the the threats to infrastructure, the tech industry's role, the complications presented by the coronavirus pandemic and the reasons why online voting isn't ready for prime time. Check out the special report.

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