To Catch A Modern Warfare 2 Cyber-Thief

Modern Warfare 2 is already making an appearance at torrent sites all over the internet, but it could have been worse. Dean Takahashi reports on how IPCybercrime stopped one pirate from making his big score.

It all started with a Craigslist post, as many seedy stories these days do. Last Thursday a listing popped up for a Modern Warfare 2 Xbox 360 bundle, nearly two weeks before the eagerly anticipated game was supposed to hit store shelves. Activision hired Dallas private investigation firm IPCybercriume.com to track down the sale. A little investigative Facebook work later and the firm uncovered two men who had stolen a crate of the bundles from the back room at a video game retailer. They turned the criminals over to the store's loss prevention department, but that was only the beginning.

On the 30th of October, Activision directed IPCybercrime to an individual going by the handle "cedelamo" and "cdelamo815", who had posted on an Xbox 360 ISO site requesting donations to buy one of the bundles so he could duplicate Modern Warfare 2. The investigators checked the email address used in the posts against Facebook users, which led them to a site offering console mods. From there they brokered a deal, acquired the culprit's mobile phone number, and tracked him down at the address they had acquired through Facebook.

The investigators identified the culprit as 18-year-old Christian Del Amo, a modder known for selling hacked Xbox 360 hard drives filled with pirated games. IPCybercrime turned the investigation over to the Miami-Dade police department, which purchased a copy of Modern Warfare 2 from Del Amo, arrested the runner who had delivered the disc, who then led him directly to the Del Amo home, where the pirate was arrested.

"It all happened very fast," said Rob Holmes, owner of IPCybercrime. "If these guys get their stuff out, then they can do some major damage to sales and spoil it for everybody. We plug leaks every day, but this was one of the biggest ones of the year."

While the investigation didn't do much to curb the piracy already plaguing Modern Warfare 2, it is an excellent example of the lengths that publishers will go to in order to protect their property, as well as being proof that no matter how well you think you covered your tracks, they're probably not covered.

Hit up the link below for the full story.

How investigators tracked down a Modern Warfare 2 cyber pirate [VentureBeat]


Comments

    Disgusting. Activision should spend more time working on their games, making it so people shouldn't WANT to pirate them, instead of wasting money tracking down random individuals.

    Piracy will ALWAYS exist. Deal with it, and just make a better game

      It's not disgusting, this guy was trying to make a living off of pirated software.

      Sure piracy will always exist but selling stolen shit for profit is lame, I'm glad they caught him.

        and selling Cars without wheels isnt Cos thats the PC version of cod for ya

        Actually, you're right. Piracy out of necessity is fine, but people who try to make a living out of it should be stopped.

          piracy out of necessity??? it is never fine. what you been smokin?

    Soooo, how are they going to stop the horde of PC players that will supposedly be pirating the game?

      how are they stopping the hordes of 360 players that are ALREADY pirating the game theres still no PC release yet but the 360 ones been out for quite a while woah they stopped one bunch of guys

    The guy abbreviated his real name and used legitimate contact information. He deserved to get caught.

    I find it hilarious and a little ironic that it's the 360 version that gets pirated first.

    its hard to pirate blu ray discs atm.

      thats only because theres not enough demand if the 360 had had a blur ray drive blu ray piracy would be wicked rampart at the moment give it time

    I'm sure he was referring to the fact that the 360 version was pirated before the PC version, Deadlydorito

    not to mention like... Facebook? If you're going to post on an illegal forum then a persona might be a good idea.

    though of course, your IP is always available...

    Why do PC gamers pirate their games, take all profitability from the PC market, then cry foul when the devs and publishers ignore the PC market? then use the results of their actions to justify the piracy. Lunacy.

      Ah, Mike ... You do realise this is a story about piracy on the XBox 360, right ???

      Did you plau pc games in the 80s and early 90s as a 7-10 year old youth?

      It's still not a real justification but with the little learning of morals, technology and business, and the fact that a lot of us didn't have the 20 - 50 dollars to buy a copy of the latest Commander Keen, you just try and I mean TRY resisting copying that floppy from your mate at school.

      Felt good man.

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