Man sentenced to 5 years for IP address scheme

Man set up companies to request additional internet protocol addresses.

Man pointing to the word IPV4 on a screen that connects to images of monitors, mobile phones, and satellites.

IPv4 IP addresses are in high demand. Recent auctions at Hilco Streambank have fetched between $30-$40 per IP address.

All of that money has captured the attention of people trying to game the system. One of those people is headed to jail for five years.

Amir Golestan, CEO of Micfo LLC, used a network of fake companies to secure more than 735,000 IP addresses from American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN).

ARIN sued Golestan and his company in 2018, and the parties settled the dispute. But federal prosecutors took note and filed criminal wire fraud charges against Golestan in 2019. They showed that the shell companies involved the production of notarized affidavits in the names of people who didn’t exist.

Brian Krebs writes that Golestan initially fought the charges but capitulated on the second day of his trial in 2021.

This might not be the last case like this. In a press release, ARIN stated, “ARIN has recently made a criminal referral to authorities in another service region regarding an individual and his corporate entities that improperly sought addresses from ARIN.”

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