Special guest: Sean McLinden, Outcome Technology Associates, Principal

In this episode, Sean discusses the now-famous Iowa Lottery fraud case—a case dating back to 2017 in which Eddie Tipton, former information security director of the Multi-State Lottery Association confessed to rigging the October 2015 “Hot Lotto” in which the winning ticket was worth $14.3 million.

This fascinating investigation reads like an episode of Mission Impossible, but through years of careful investigation, authorities were finally able to directly connect Tipton to the crime. Tipton was tried and convicted of rigging the drawing and is now serving 25 years in prison.

Sean got into digital forensics in a roundabout way as his first practice was in medicine (Sean is a neurologist in Pittsburgh). He paid his way through medical school working on some artificial intelligence programming projects.

One of those projects involved developing predictive coding algorithms for viewing large bodies of texts. If you’ve seen the movie 3 Days Of The Condor you’ll be familiar with the story of a group of people who read print media from various countries in different languages and then try to use that information to predict things like civil unrest, fraud, and espionage.

A team Sean was involved with had the responsibility for developing an automated system that could scan media from all around the world (mostly newsprint) and then categorize the information so it could be searched to find links between relevant types of documents. 

After he finished medical school Sean started a public health research institute and in the course of that work, he received a call from a lawyer at a prominent bank who was involved in a lawsuit regarding breach of contract. They were looking for somebody who could scan through hundreds of thousands of emails that had been written over the course of six years and categorize them so they could be used as evidence

This eDiscovery case turned into a $30M win for the client and Sean’s digital forensics practice took off.

Listen to the podcast to find out how what happened.

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