Dmitry Dokuchaev – Playing Both Sides?

Christopher Burgess Blog, Russia

Dmitry Dokuchaev, Major in the Russian Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation (FSB; Russian: Федеральная служба безопасности Российской Федерации (ФСБ)), was arrested by the Russian FSB and charged with treason in December 2016 (see: Russian FSB cybersecurity implosion continues with more arrests). On 28 February 2017, Dokuchaev is indicted by the United States on charges of Espionage, Computer Fraud and a host of others charges for activities during the time period of 2014 through December 2016.  Note the dates. He is arrested by the FSB in December 2016 – the activities identified within the indictment ended December 2016.  Dokuchaev is both a busy and popular gent.

Who is Dmitry Dokuchaev?

Prevendra - Dmitry DokuchaevDmitry Dokuchaev’s (дмитрий докучаев) relationship with the FSB began when he was given the choice between jail or cooperation, as Dokuchaev, is the Russian hacker known by his street name “FORB.”  In a 2004 interview with Vedmosti, the then 20-year old Dokuchaev claimed to have successfully penetrated the US government (not further identified) while a university student in Yekaterinburg (his home town). Dokuchaev, continued how he met his expenses by “stealing money from credit cards” earning for himself $5-30,000 per month. This latter activity came to the attention of the FSB, and they made him an offer he could not refuse.

Dokuchaev, now a Major within the FSB’s cybersecurity CDC, and deputy to Mikhailov, was identified by the FSB as sharing both personal data and FSB data to both companies and the government representatives of the United States.

The DOJ indictment identifies Dokuchaev as:  Dmitry Alexsandrovich Dokuchaev, also known as “Patrick Nagel,” was a Russian national and resident. Dokuchaev was an FSB officer assigned to the Second Division of the FSB Center 18, also known as the FSB Center for Information Security.

Now Dokuchaev is charged with directing the effort to compromise the Yahoo email system and systematically obtain email information on targets of interest to the FSB. The indictment, 39 pages in length, goes into great detail on the depth of Dokuchaev and the FSB interest in monitoring the private email of Russian nationals, as well as international personas.  Dokuchaev and his co-conspirators harvested the content of individual’s private email accounts, and made every effort to monetize this unique and illegal access.

The Russian’s are charging him with similar activity.  There is little likelihood that Dokuchaev will be extradited to the US, though he no doubt would prefer that to his current residence, Lefortovo prison.

Is Dmitry Dokuchaev a pawn in the grand game of realpolitik chess, or was he simply too greedy and played all the angles at once and has been discovered by both the United States, Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) and the Russian FSB?

We’ll keep our eye on this, as the Russian FSB cybersecurity team implosion continues.


Additional reading:

Dmitry Dokuchaev Indictment
Russia’s FSB Cybersecurity Team Implodes
Russian FSB cybersecurity implosion continues with more arrests

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