Brits arrested in Israeli spyware hunt

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A British couple has been arrested for helping companies to spy on the activities of their competitors.

Michael Haephrati, 41 and Ruth Brier-Haephrati, 28, from London were collared as part of a wider investigation into Israeli industrial espionage.

Haephrati is being held in Brixton Prison, his wife in Holloway, having been charged with 'unauthorised modification of the contents of a computer' between December and February this year. A further extradition hearing will take place on June 3.

"Computers can hold highly valuable and sensitive information, often worth much more than the hardware equipment itself," said Carole Theriault, security consultant at Sophos.

Several Israeli companies are currently under investigation for using spyware to illegally gather information on competitors. Industries affected include satellite, cellular communications and auto manufacturing.

So far more than eighteen arrests have taken places, including some top members of high-profile Israeli companies.

In February SC reported an Israeli spammer landed himself in hot water after criticising Microsoft.

www.sophos.com

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