|Robles last tweet November 27 marked #AlphaAsFuck|
Raúl Robles, a prominent Mexican hacker and cybersecurity expert, was eating breakfast with his father at a quiet café in a leafy neighborhood of the western city of Guadalajara when a masked gunman walked in and opened fire. Robles, 31, was reportedly hit five times and died at the scene. The killer escaped before police arrived.
The December 2 murder has shocked Mexico's hacker community but it has also provided a window on a murky world of intense rivalry and mutual sabotage where the death itself was seemingly announced beforehand in an online forum.
Robles, a resident of Mexico City, had been the target of several threatening messages on Hispachan, a site for completely anonymous Spanish-language discussion that has proven popular among hackers since its launch in 2012. All the threats have now been deleted.
"I'm gonna kill this faggot!! I know he's coming to my city and I'll kill him here," read the first threat posted in October, alongside an image of Robles.
The next warning came on the eve of the killing. "I'm sick of Raúl Robles, I have a gun and I'll steal his fucking car," it read. "I saw him eating breakfast in a café yesterday, he goes there very often, I'll wait and see if he comes tomorrow."
A third message appeared hours after the killing alongside an image of a handgun: "Like I told you, I'd had it up to here with the fat son of a bitch, that's why my heart didn't miss a beat when the time came to kill him."
Robles — who was known by the pseudonym MegaByte — was the CEO of Hacking Mexico, a cybersecurity firm that claims to provide training for agents from Mexico's federal Attorney General's Office and the National Security and Investigation Center. Having founded the company in 2012, Robles went on to become one of Mexico's best known hackers and would often run hacking courses and give speeches at conferences.
Robles was a controversial figure who faced accusations of humiliating and defrauding other members of the hacking community. On social networks such as Facebook and Taringa, several users published documents that appeared to indicated that Robles had lied about holding a master's degree and falsely claimed that his company was affiliated with Mexico's National Polytechnic Institute.
In an online community characterized by bravado and macho attitudes, Robles also loved to flaunt his apparent wealth by uploading YouTube videos of expensive watches, sports cars and fat stacks of cash. His Twitter profile pronounced his love of "weed, mezcal and oral sex."
Within hours of Robles' death, hundreds of commenters on sites such as Reddit, and Taringa left virulent messages mocking his fate and denouncing him as a fraud and a bully who deserved to be killed.
One YouTube user named TechnoHack alleged that Robles had sexually harassed him or her by sending photos of his private parts. Another user, Petrovic Ígor, admitted that he and several others used to bully Robles on online software forums.
Daniel Rodríguez, a Mexican IT professional better known by his online alias Last Dragon, told VICE News that Robles often dismissed his critics as "blacks or indians" in a way that carried clear racist connotations.
Rodríguez accused Robles of trolling him on his blog, but said he was much nicer in person than his online persona suggested. Even so, Rodríguez said that the largely unsympathetic reaction to the murder was "justified, despite being politically incorrect."
According to Rodríguez, Hacking Mexico has often been involved in bitter disputes with rival groups such as Anonymous México that hacked Robles' company website in 2013 to highlight flaws in its security systems. He added that the Mexican Organization of Ethical Hackers got very upset when one of Robles' colleagues started trolling them online.
There is a "lot of tension" between members of Mexico's hacking community, Rodríguez stressed, but "the only thing everyone had in common was that they hated MegaByte."
Shortly after the shooting Guadalajara's attorney general, Eduardo Almaguer, told local reporters that Robles had used several different aliases and that a number of complaints had been filed against him in Mexico City for cyber crimes. He did not give details about the alleged crimes.
To read the full VICE article link here