AusCERT demo piques police interest

Queensland Police is conducting an investigation following a Facebook demonstration at the AusCERT security conference this week, having already approached a journalist on the matter.

Queensland Police is conducting an investigation following a Facebook demonstration at the AusCERT security conference this week, having already approached a journalist on the matter.

Fairfax journalist Ben Grubb published an article today on a demonstration, conducted by Christian Heinrich, that reportedly centred around extracting privacy-protected Facebook photos via the social networking site's content delivery network by running a program to guess the URL of the photos. The article said that Heinrich targeted security contractor Chris Gatford's profile without his consent, lifting family photos.

Following the publication of the article, Grubb tweeted that he had been "arrested" briefly in connection with the article and that his iPad had been confiscated.

The Queensland Police Media unit said on its Twitter account, however, that Grubb was not arrested, instead saying that he had been "interviewed briefly by police" and that the iPad would be returned as soon as possible.

"Police talk to people for a range of reasons. We interview witnesses all the time," it said.

It said that police can seize any material that they think may have been used in a crime, and added that an investigation is ongoing.

When ZDNet Australia called the unit, it would not say whether Heinrich was being investigated, and said that it could not yet comment on whether the investigation was relating to the legality of the demonstration at AusCERT; however, following Grubb's questioning, images were removed from the Fairfax story.

ZDNet Australia spoke to Heinrich, who has since returned to his home in Sydney. He said that Queensland Police has not got in touch with him about the presentation.

"The Queensland Police haven't been in touch with me, but I'm very easy to find," Heinrich said.

"I've offered to go back up [to Queensland] if they want me to," he added.

Heinrich said that in addition to his not being contacted by police, he had not been stopped while leaving Queensland or upon his arrival back in NSW.

Stilgherrian also contributed to this article.

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