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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Three individuals were charged on Friday for their alleged roles in a July 15 Twitter attack, including a Florida minor, according to the Justice Department.

Why it matters: The minor, a Tampa resident, faces 30 felony charges for “scamming people across America” as the “mastermind” behind a hack that targeted high-profile accounts, including former President Barack Obama, former Vice President Joe Biden, Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk.

  • The FBI and the Department of Justice conducted a countrywide investigation, the state attorney's office stated, finding and apprehending the minor in Hillsborough County.

Charges the minor faces include:

  • One count of organized fraud;
  • 17 counts of communications fraud;
  • One count of fraudulent use of personal information with more than $100,000 or at least 30 victims;
  • 10 counts of fraudulent use of personal information;
  • One count of access to computer or electronic device without authority.

Mason Sheppard, 19, from the U.K., faces charges for conspiracy to commit wire fraud, conspiracy to commit money laundering and the intentional access of a protected computer.

Nima Fazeli, 22, from Orlando, Florida, was charged with aiding and abetting the intentional access of a protected computer.

What they're saying: “There is a false belief within the criminal hacker community that attacks like the Twitter hack can be perpetrated anonymously and without consequence,” United States Attorney David Anderson said in a statement Friday.

  • “Today’s charging announcement demonstrates that the elation of nefarious hacking into a secure environment for fun or profit will be short-lived."
  • "Criminal conduct over the Internet may feel stealthy to the people who perpetrate it, but there is nothing stealthy about it. In particular, I want to say to would-be offenders, break the law, and we will find you.”

The big picture: Twitter announced Thursday that the attack "targeted a small number of employees through a phone spear phishing attack. This attack relied on a significant and concerted attempt to mislead certain employees and exploit human vulnerabilities to gain access to our internal systems."

  • "By obtaining employee credentials, they were able to target specific employees who had access to our account support tools. They then targeted 130 Twitter accounts - Tweeting from 45, accessing the DM inbox of 36, and downloading the Twitter Data of 7."

Go deeper: Twitter's torrent of woes

Go deeper

Elliott Broidy says Twitter should take action on other hack and leak stories

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Elliott Broidy, a top Republican fundraiser expected to plead guilty in a foreign lobbying case, is challenging Twitter over its handling of content related to "hacked materials."

What's happening: Broidy wants Twitter to explain why information from hacked and leaked materials about his case was allowed to remain on the site, while Twitter took swift action to suppress a New York Post story about Hunter Biden allegedly based on hacked and released materials, according to a letter obtained by Axios.

Dave Lawler, author of World
2 hours ago - World

How Biden might tackle the Iran deal

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Four more years of President Trump would almost certainly kill the Iran nuclear deal — but the election of Joe Biden wouldn’t necessarily save it.

The big picture: Rescuing the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) is near the top of Biden's foreign policy priority list. He says he'd re-enter the deal once Iran returns to compliance, and use it as the basis on which to negotiate a broader and longer-lasting deal with Iran.

Kamala Harris, the new left's insider

Photo illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photo: Joe Buglewicz/Getty Images     

Progressive leaders see Sen. Kamala Harris, if she's elected vice president, as their conduit to a post-Biden Democratic Party where the power will be in younger, more diverse and more liberal hands.

  • Why it matters: The party's rising left sees Harris as the best hope for penetrating Joe Biden's older, largely white inner circle.

If Biden wins, Harris will become the first woman, first Black American and first Indian American to serve as a U.S. vice president — and would instantly be seen as the first in line for the presidency should Biden decide against seeking a second term.