back to article Brass necked suspect swallows USB evidence

A suspected cybercrook who swallowed a USB drive in an apparent bid to destroy evidence has been charged with obstruction. Florin Necula, from New York, ate a Kingston flash drive thought to contain mag strip dumps from credit cards shortly after his arrest outside a bank in Queens on 21 January. He gobbled the USB drive while …

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FAIL

A USB drive???

What's wrong with microSD? You could eat one of those and nobody would notice

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Joke

The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

obviously he wanted a byte to eat

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Joke

Did he have to take smaller bytes?

(ill get my coat)

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Happy

A nibble

you mean a nibble/nybble?

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Joke

Can't resist...

Is that why they call them mag strip dumps?

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Happy

Charged with obstruction,

operated on for an obstruction.

I wonder if a USB 3.0 stick would have passed through him faster?

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Joke

"Police recovered laptops, cameras, flash drives, and mobile phones"

If that's evidence of a crime then I must be an evil mastermind!

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Silver badge

yeah but no but

Where do you keep all your proceeds of crime?

If he's happy to swallow tech then what about the bigger bits.

This bloke sounds like Eric Cartman

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Joke

Police recovered laptops, cameras, flash drives, and mobile phones

Had to read this twice because I thought he had swallowed these as well...... that's what you call a techno junkie..

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Coat

"mag strip dumps"?

No, that will be in three or four days...

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I'd be interested to know...

...if the data was recoverable.

I wouldn't have thought stomach acid was so potent as to irreparably damage the flash chips.

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Anonymous Coward

Fill your boots

If you really want to know, leave your phone number and I'll make sure you get a call next time a suspect passes evidence, you can pop round and take a look.

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Silver badge

Ditto...

I suspect it would have survived pretty well... If it would have managed to complete its journey unaided without getting stuck, or doing some internal damage is another story.

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stomach acid potency

empty stomach something like pH1 HCl iirc. Should think that _could_ damage a chip.

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Hmmm, thanks but no thanks.

I'm happy to know without seeing. :)

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WTF?

Why go through all that

Couldn't he have just stamped on it?

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Joke

Couldn't he have just stamped on it?

Maybe he was hoping to do his own "data recovery" rather than have the cops do it for him!

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Silver badge

Stamping is unlikely to work.

Stamping will probably just damage the outer case of the drive. The data is on a bit of silicon which is enclosed in it's own solid plastic case soldered to the circuit board inside.

Even if you break the outer case, and the circuit board, getting access is just a matter of some soldering. Even if you did manage to snap the flash chip casing you'd need to snap the bit of silicon inside to really do the job properly, and that's hard because it's very small, and the entire flash package is a solid mass, akin to trying to break a stone by stamping on it.

I had a mobile phone run over by a landrover, and no chips or circuit boards broke. The plastic case cracked (it's not solid) and the screen broke (it's a long thin bit of glass). Everything else inside was fine, as proved by just replacing the LCD and everything worked again.

If you really want to destroy a flash drive you are better off hitting it with something solid that isn't going to cushion the blow, like a 7ib club hammer. Comparatively soft things like shoes and vehicle tyres just spread the force out too much.

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Careful with that argument.

I had a car drive over my foot and nothing happened, no bruises or nothing. So that example is a strawman --- cars have a relatively well-distributed mass (plus suspension), so anything that doesn't stick out too much will remain relatively unharmed.

I agree with the difficulty of breaking the USB stick while semi-supervised though. He should've used an SDcard + adapter, and only try to break the SD.

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FAIL

Heavy metal toxicity

Not smart, not smart at all.

On a related matter, I was sad to find out recently that Mr Mange-Tout, who ate everything including a light airplane, died a few years ago.

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Coat

Sorry...

Presumably if it *had* passed through him it would have been a flash in the pan...

I'll get my coat as well.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Sorry...

Is that a pun in the flush?

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Let the pun begin

He wasn't exactly flushed with pride at his actions.

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Re: Couldn't he have just stamped on it?

Try it, stamp repeatedly on a flash card. I doubt you'll be able to stamp hard enough on a solid floor to even crack it, let alone damage it beyond recovery.

The only way to be sure is thermite, high concentration sulphuric or chloric acid or a blender.

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Coat

Still not extreme enough

As Ms Ripley tells us, the only way to be sure is to take off and nuke the entire site from orbit.

OK, OK, mine's the leather one.

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Jobs Halo

Nursery rhyme time!

There was a young crook who swallowed a flash drive

I don't know why he swallowed a flash drive - perhaps he’ll die!

There was a young crook who swallowed an iPod,

That wriggled and wiggled and tiggled inside him;

He swallowed the iPod to catch the flash drive;

I don't know why he swallowed a flash drive - perhaps he’ll die!

There was a young crook who swallowed a Playstation;

How absurd to swallow a Playstation.

He swallowed the Playstation to catch the iPod,

He swallowed the iPod to catch the flash drive;

I don't know why he swallowed a flash drive - perhaps he’ll die!

There was a young crook who swallowed a BBC Micro;

Fancy that to swallow a BBC Micro!

He swallowed the BBC Micro to catch the Playstation,

He swallowed the Playstation to catch the iPod,

He swallowed the iPod to catch the flash drive;

I don't know why he swallowed a flash drive - perhaps he’ll die!

There was a young crook that swallowed a PC;

What a hog, to swallow a PC;

He swallowed the PC to catch the BBC Micro,

He swallowed the BBC Micro to catch the Playstation,

He swallowed the Playstation to catch the iPod,

He swallowed the iPod to catch the flash drive;

I don't know why he swallowed a flash drive - perhaps he’ll die!

There was a young crook who swallowed a CRAY,

I don't know how he swallowed a CRAY;

He swallowed the CRAY to catch the PC,

He swallowed the PC to catch the BBC Micro,

He swallowed the BBC Micro to catch the Playstation,

He swallowed the Playstation to catch the iPod,

He swallowed the iPod to catch the flash drive;

I don't know why he swallowed a flash drive - perhaps he’ll die!

There was a young crook who swallowed Steve Ballmer,

He's dead, of course.

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I wish ....

.... that I had as much spare time as you.

Are you employed?

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IT Angle

If you're going to quote TSG

Then I'd expect you to report on the vaguely-IT related "programmer masturbates midflight" article from TheSmokingGun. A bit sad the FBI has to spend their time on such cases.

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Grenade

True Convenience Stores

This is why there is a convenience store near every corner in the Colonies... Nothing serves up a smoldering silicon better than a microwave oven.

Faster than you can say "lost data", its GONE!

... not that *I* have had to ever dispose of evidence in such a way, mind you...

NOTE: Mind the smoke and sparks. No one will notice you putting it in, but 10 seconds later EVERYONE is watching. Grenade? If you don't know what will happen, don't try it. ;)

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Silver badge

Poor Sarah Bee

.... for having to read and moderate all the inevitable 'crap jokes' (pun intented)

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Bronze badge

Re: Poor Sarah Bee

It's a shitty job, but someone's gut to do it. (sic)

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Coat

Yipes

I spose it now contains shitty data, then.

Jokes aside, I'd hint that this guy is counting on his own stomach juices to do the "data wipe". Sadly, the juices will only corrode the outer shell.

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Advert

I wonder if Kingston will use this to show how their memory sticks will survive almost everything.

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Muppet

Seems a high price for not encrypting the data on a USB stick. Cyber criminals - smart in some respects, utterly stupid in others.

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Volume

"No, the data volume of the drive wasn't recorded."

But what about the physical volume?

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Terminator

Warranty void?

Does this void his warranty, I wonder?

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Joke

And this is why

you should always chew before swallowing, children!

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Grenade

Fat content?

So the plods are interested in the FAT content of aforementioned drive? I wonder if, as it traversed his intestines whether it was broken down into trans-fat.

*reaches for his coat while dodging the rotten eggs thrown from the audience*

Grenade - maybe he could try this for an encore.

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Coat

The Flash Fryer

Do you want chips with that?

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