Erin Andrews interviewing Bruce Pearl, head coach of the University of Tennessee.
Photos of Erin Andrews at work and on the job.
Michael David Barrett, 48, of Westmont, Illinois, was arrested Friday at O’Hare International Airport and charged with felony stalking. Barrett allegedly contacted hotels in the various cities where Andrews was working in order to locate her hotel room number. Some hotels revealed her room number where Michael David Barrett would forcibly remove the door’s peephole and replace it with a miniature video camera.
According to the FBI: seven of the eight videos that invaded Erin Andrew’s privacy and showed her nude in her hotel room appear to have been shot in a hotel room that the victim identified as the Marriott Nashville at Vanderbilt University in Tennessee in September 2008. That hotel room had an altered peephole, and Barrett occupied a room adjacent to Andrews’ room. A similar scenario is suspected in a hotel in Milwaukee, but investigators have not found that Barrett checked in to the hotel at the same time as Andrews.
Erin Andrews became aware of the videos in July 2009 after they were apparently published on the Internet in March 2009. The video became a topic used to distribute malware. Poison search links were common as a result of search for the Erin Andrews nude video. Searching on popular terms gives a list of search results on Google, for example — some of the results not so friendly. Some of the links lead users to sites that show warnings that people have malicious software infections or are about to get assaulted with malware. When people clicked on the fake alerts, they end up starting a procedure that installed malware on their computers. Cybercriminals often use a tactic that presents a window that looks like a Microsoft Windows popup alerting the user to a ‘computer infection’ or virus. Malware can then produce a range of problems on the computer — from more popup annoyances to software code or ‘bots’ that can be part of a network that attacks servers of important websites, such as military sites. Tens or hundreds of thousands of bots can be programmed to hit a website at the same time, which brings down the server. The attack is known as a denial of service attack. Host administrators respond by blocking out the IP addresses of the attacking bots and computers.
Google works to identify the poison links, but on January 31, 2009 there was an over-correction when all of Google’s results (including Google’s own google.com and stopbadware.org) were briefly flagged for almost 40 minutes as sites containing malware.
StopBadware.org is a consumer-oriented nonprofit organization aimed at fighting malicious software, or “badware”. The organization is run by the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School, and Oxford University’s Oxford Internet Institute. Support is being provided by Google, Mozilla, Lenovo, PayPal, VeriSign, and Sun Microsystems. Consumer Reports WebWatch is serving as an unpaid special advisor.
Barrett was in federal custody in Chicago overnight, and scheduled to appear before U.S. Magistrate Judge Arlander Keys at 10 a.m. Saturday in Everett McKinley Dirksen United States Courthouse federal court in Chicago (Illinois North District Court).
See also …
United States v. Michael David Barrett CRIMINAL COMPLAINT (INTERSTATE STALKING) obtained and uploaded by Chicago Tribune
Chicago Breaking News Center: ESPN stalking suspect ordered held here
Video of Erin Andrews on ESPN College Game Day on January 26, 2008.