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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Alaska

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Canadian Man Charged in Scheme to Commit Cyberattacks

ANCHORAGE – A federal indictment unsealed today charges a Canadian national with committing cyberattacks.

According to court documents, Matthew Philbert, 31, of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, conspired with others known and unknown to the United States to damage computers, and in the course of that conspiracy did damage a computer belonging to the State of Alaska in April 2018.

In a separate and parallel investigation, the Canadian authorities today also announced cybercrime charges against Philbert. He was arrested on Nov 30, 2021, by Ontario Provincial Police where he remains in custody.

“Today’s unsealed indictment is a great example of the importance of international partnerships to combat the evolving and growing threat of cybercrimes,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Bryan Wilson of the District of Alaska. “Cybercriminals are a dangerous threat and together with our law enforcement partners, we will use all our available resources to bring cybercriminals who target Alaskans to justice, wherever they are.”

“Cyber criminals are opportunistic and will target any business or individual they identify as vulnerable. The OPP continues to demonstrate its ability to seamlessly collaborate on integrated police investigations to combat cybercrimes and other illegal activities.” Deputy Commissioner Chuck Cox, Provincial Commander, Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Investigations and Organized Crime

Philbert is charged with one count of conspiracy to commit fraud and related activity in connection with computers and one count of fraud and related activity in connection with computers. This indictment in the District of Alaska is part of an ongoing national effort by the Department of Justice to address cybercrimes that target U.S. citizens from abroad.

Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Acting U.S. Attorney Bryan Wilson of the District of Alaska, and Special Agent in Charge Antony Jung of the FBI’s Anchorage Field Office made the announcement.

The FBI’s Anchorage Field Office is investigating the case. Assistant Attorney General Polite and Acting U.S. Attorney Wilson thanked the Canadian and Dutch authorities for their assistance.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Adam Alexander and Trial Attorney Alden Pelker of the Criminal Division’s Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section (CCIPS) are prosecuting the case.

An indictment is merely an allegation and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

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Topic(s): 
Cyber Crime
Component(s): 
Updated December 7, 2021