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FBI puts ‘Loverspy’ hacker on list

WASHINGTON — It is not just the federal government intercepting your communications. It could be a nosy relative or jealous partner.

Among five individuals added this week to the FBI’s list of most wanted cybercriminals is a former San Diego college student who developed an $89 program dubbed ‘‘Loverspy’’ and ‘‘Email PI.’’ The program was advertised as a way to catch a cheating lover by sending the person an electronic greeting card that, if opened, would install malicious software to capture e-mails and instant messages, or spy on the person by webcam.

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The case of Carlos Enrique Perez-Melara, 33, is noteworthy because he appears to have made little money, unlike others on the FBI list accused of bilking millions of dollars from businesses and Internet users worldwide. He was an El Salvador native in America on a student visa in 2003 when he sold the spyware. He was accused of helping turn computer users into sophisticated hackers who could use the information to stalk victims.

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