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Two Accused for Defrauding Military

According to news published on Press TV on September 15, 2010, a federal jury in the US District Court of Washington DC had accused Shannon L. Wren and Stephanie A. McCloskey of Vision Tech Components in Clearwater, Florida, for selling around more than 59,000 fake computer chips from China and Hong Kong to the US military.

McCloskey, of Clearwater, is in-charge of administration, whereas Wren, of Treasure Island, is the owner of Vision Tech Components. According to a Justice Department news release, both Stephanie McCloskey and Shannon Wren were accused for conspiracy, importing fake goods, and fraudulent e-mail.

Few of the computer chips sold by the culprits were supposedly resold to Neil Felahy and Mustafa Aljaff from Newport Beach, California, who lately confessed to have imported more than 13,000 fake chips from China. As per the Justice Department release, Wren, McCloskey and others involved made profits of an estimated $15 Million from the sales of fake integrated circuits during Jan. 1, 2007 - Dec. 31, 2009.

As per the news published on Press TV on September 15, 2010, the US authorities are now cracking down on fake suppliers because received alerts indicate that the fake chips could be faulty or bear "electronic Trojan horses" that makes them prone to hacking.

Commenting on the issue Ronald Machen (U.S. Attorney) said that counterfeit circuits could lead to the failure of several systems or enclose malicious code that could halt the hardware or enable hacking attacks, as reported by Forexyard on September 14, 2010.

Security experts say that this issue needs to be taken seriously in view of the fact that the military uses circuit boards and microchips aboard American warships, missiles, fighter planes, and antimissile systems. Hence, there is higher possibility that the attackers can target these faulty chips to distribute malware on military computer base or to hack private and confidential information to cause big harm to the country.

However, this is not the first incidence whereby the US military has been targeted. Recently, the US military revealed that a flash drive assumed to have been infected by a foreign intelligence agency installed malicious code onto a network run by the military's central command in 2008.

Security experts further stated that to tackle these different and increasing threats, the Defense Department requires an appropriate organizational structure.

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