In this task, we need you to start creating short synopsises - short story descriptions - for the six episodes of Griffin.
But first, please read the current concept description:
GRIFFIN - CONCEPT DESCRIPTION
“Griffin Sharp, 44, is a game developer from the early times. In the past fortunate and rich, he has gone from one end to another, finding himself now poor and divorced. Once caught by the feds and sentenced to five years in prison for a serious Internet fraud, he’s now earning a living at a fast food restaurant and a taxi driver.
Sharp is still on parole and prohibited from using the Internet for one year. Parole officials on his back, following his actions daily, he’s aching to use the Net. Sometimes the temptation is too much: he sneaks onto computers wherever he gets a chance.
Even though Sharp’s on parole and the officials have laid him restrictions, the police still needs his knowledge. They occasionally contact him asking for help in solving cyber crime cases. Helping cops isn’t what Sharp enjoys, but it gives him a chance to keep up his magic.
While solving the cases, Sharp suddenly catches onto something else: an old hacker friend that got him in trouble in the first place. Now his friend, Benjamin Dallas, aka Nacros X, has re-emerged to the Internet, to IRC. There’s only one problem: he wasn’t supposed to be around anymore. He was supposed to be dead.
Even the hacker community ends up divided: some convinced it to be just a stolen identity, some believing it to be the real Nacros X. For Sharp, it’s just one more reason to get online.”
The request is to create short story descriptions of about 1500 letters (approximately half a page) that:
* Describe a short cyber crime related story
* Has our main character as the protagonist (see the concept description attached)
* May or may not be related to the antagonist ("Nacros X") of the story
It would be preferred to
* Establish the story in a realistic, believeable manner
* The setting takes place in our current time
* To have a good balance between comedy and drama (30-70 if you prefer some figures)
* Have a healthy doze of mystery and crime
It is required that the text is
* Written in English language, in as good language as possible
* Is of your original writing
I would be pleased to find out if:
* The inspiration for the synopsis would be from one of the shots in this production
* It would take place in the country of your own residence - you know the place the best
We will eventually pick six of these synopsises and continue from there, implementing them to the main storyline.
Its well know that technology arrives to third world countries very late and that the specialists are hard to find, but when done they can work miracles with a few tools, Our country in the subject has a very powerful group called “MURO”, and this is the group of people that mandates the path that the country may go, controlling communications and financials allowing foreign investment and making believe to the foreign investors how good it will be for them.
Also it is well known that technology had been a very important part of the control and power they had, at the point that been able to hire a young physicist from the University to help them move the future balance one way or the other as it pleases them.
Mr sharp works as a Teacher at the Local University, due to the fact that it was the only job allowed for him since his participation on the Election poll for the Presidency campaign in 1988, in which he was paid by the state party to alter in their favour the data that was flowing from 3,000 elections districts at the time via a main frame and terminals all across the country. Griffin, spend a few months in jail since there was no hard laws for cyber crime at the time in the country, but he had a penance.
For years hi try to participate and get back to his underground groups but was banned from the community since he was marked to be blacklisted by the government.
One morning 20 years later while giving his lecture he receives a text message that only says to him “we have your daughter”
The right wind Hidden power “MURO” above economics and politicians, is very upset with the local Telephonic company and its major stock holder and owner: “Carlos Mils” that had all telecommunication business, plus the must important bank in the country, so they decided to create a crisis using both companies: “Telco” and “+Bank”.
Mr. Mils, use to be a respectable member for the “MURO” group, how ever he had got into a personal fight with other members supporters of “Richard Sanilas”, over come by power and out of him must of the time, the kind of person that has breakfast in Spain, eats in Rome and dines in Moscou, taking care of business from a plane every day.
Griffin, is then ask to create the worm to reroute all bank traffic from house holds using “Telco” routers to the lookalike “+Bank” web page in less than 1 day, or else!
He delivers the worm, with the warning that he may not mention this to anyone or all of his family will be killed.
Griffin realizes that not even his daughter or wife was aware she was kidnap for a few hours.
In the next month Griffin find a way to be moved to a different location in the country and silently keeps on his teacher job.
A year after, once the home router business of “Telco” has close to 90% of the market and that “+Bank” has also accomplish the use of home banking, the worm is lunched, bots, mass mailers, etc…
Since the fraud is to happen very fast, all accounts are to be wipe in seconds, having the target bank to be diverted among several offshore banks, hard to trace and to pursuit due to legal implications among countries.
The worm catches the eye of all major security companies, but it’s to late, the wiping of the accounts has taken effect.
Mr. Marco Lucio, a well know respected engineer of the “Telco” business, has grave the attention due to all the law suits against the “+Bank”, starts to review the situation and decides to contact one of his best friends from school , to help him with the situation.
Marco contacts Griffin to help him figure it out what would have been done here, while “Telco” stocks go down 30% and the “+Bank” had been intervene by the government
Corruption, Politics and Power work against Griffin trying to solve what he have done with out been cough as the creator of such a crisis.
In his ingenuity Griffin, had a worm of the worm to allow him to kept track of all transactions to be made when the worm launches, this tracking was to be kept in secret at a server in Europe, so now he and Marco are to obtain the information from the server, hiding the prior knowledge he had of this.
What he was not counting on is the fact that the “MURO”, has hire personnel to keep track of Griffin whereabouts and that his family was in danger.
He needed to find evidence of the perpetrators and nail them as fast as possible.
Morning evolves from the night above "The City". Cops rush in to Sharp’s cheap looking, dusty apartment, "Inspector Holmes" on their tails. They caught Sharp from… well, sleeping late from his morning shift at the “Happy Breakfast/Meal/Lunch and Dinner” –restaurant. Sharp’s confused and asks, which horrible crime did he do to deserve such an awakening from his beautiful, beautiful sleep. Inspector Holmes, not in the mood for jokes, tells him to put his pants on and come along. Among the cops, a young detective-wannabe Ana Cortez, to which Sharp creates a love-hate -relasionship (slowly during the piece).
On the way, Holmes tells Sharp what’s going on: During the previous night, a patrol went to check a noisy apartment after a complain by an old grandma. In there, they found a young college-girl, killed in a horrible way. Sharp’s still confused of his role in this, wondering if he’s gone insane and started sleep-walking and to hunt young girls.
They arrive to the apartment and the picture comes clearer now; the girl’s death was streamed online through a webcam and she was also in video-chat with someone else. Now, only an empty, dimly lit room is revealed at the other end of the line. They want Sharp to find out where that line ends. Simple task for our “Pong/Super-Mario”, as some cops, irritated by this geeks presence, call him.
They arrive to the address that Sharp discovered and find only an empty container with only a table, laptop and a small lamp in it. Sharp is kicked off by the investigators who believe they can solve it by them selves. So he returns to his daily life.. but something in the scene bothers him, something of the set-up reminded him of pass and he needs to discover more.
He sneakes on to a computer and begins journey through cyber-space. Finally, he finds something odd; girls IP from some meta-information of an online-snuf-film site. But who was the person at the other end of the line? Then, he finds a video and the other participant, a darkened face, manipulated voice, commanding the masked "on-site-excecutors" of the girl. He's shocked and he needs to provide his intel to the cops, no matter how illegal it is for him to use computer.
But a younger cop, a sneaky bastard, turns him down and tells him to piss off and to stop wasting their time and to let this be the last time he uses computers with out authorization or he'll send him to jail for the rest of his miserable life to be a jailbait for men with much more respect around the arms.
Of course, certain, that there's something more to this case, Sharp can't leave his own investigations and he continues to research and discovers, that this may not be a one-time case, but there seems to be quite a history with this sort of "snuffing". And then a name from the past pops-up from the events; "Nacros X". He's been the big organizer for the safety of their little "hack n' slash youg girls and stream it to the perverts all across the galaxy -network" and there seems to be plenty of $ involved. And apparently, this time Nacros X couldn't resist to watch via his private connection while giving his commands of horror to the puppets, for better (HD) quality of course.
More victims are found.
As he knows he can't go straight to the younger detectives, he hacks to the police network and digs up "Holmes's" home addres and goes straight to him, personally. "Holmes" is furious for him to show up to his home and threatens to kill him if he ever does something like that again. But he does give value for Sharp's investigations and together they continue forward and younger detective just has to suck his pride.
Sharp dives back in to the world of bits. He discovers, that the snuff-ring is huge and many people in it are powerful (incl. politicians etc.). On the side, he's more interest in the role and whereabouts of Nacros X. They start the online hunt and find a site searching for girls for webcam-porn and Nacos X's "fingerprints" all over the site. They recruit Cortez to act as a bait and the trap is set.
The night of the webcam-porn arrives and Cortez, under an "ghost-alias", begins the pre-show chat with whom other, but Nacros X and they set up the streams etc. Room next to her, Sharp begins hunting him down and yet Nacros is well covered, he finds him. They track his IP to a raillway station's wlan, cops head on. Sharp is left behind to keep an eye on Nacros, while the masked-killers arrive to Cortez. Suddenly, Nacros finds out that he's been tracked and pulls the plug, before that he orders his men to kill the bitch. Sharp notifies cops and rushes to Cortez's room to "save her". Of course, against two big, hell-of-a-big guys, Sharp is like a goldfish against a great-white shark. But; Cortez ain't no sissy; she kicks the hell out of the guys and wraps them up before more cops arrive to arrest them.
At the same time, Holmes reaches the raillway station with his troops, but all they find is an empty container with nothing but a "HA-HA!" message, written to the screen of the abandoned/formatted computer with a lipstick (wat? a woman?).
The police admit that they've found a new villain, one to be taken seriously. And much thanks to Sharp's help and he's knowledge of the past's hacker-circles. Holmes says, that perhaps one day, they could use Sharp again. Sharp goes home, late evening, rain and other perfect things for a man who's lost his life and realises he can only gain recognition by doing the very same that got him into trouble first place; hacking. While the late night news tell of huge porn-scandal across the country, he picks up an old laptop he's hided from the eyes of the parole-officers. He logs in through an old, abandoned russian satellite and begins a hunt. A hunt that might be endless. And this is personal.
In his desire to get online and at the same time, check up on his old friend, Griffin finds himself tempted to buy a prepaid mobile SIM. Aware that the police are watching his every move, he stops in to fill up his taxi and purchases a prepaid SIM card across the counter. Given that he's the computer guru, he stays up to date with technology and has a dual SIM capable mobile phone. Using this he knows that the police can continue monitoring his phone number, whilst at the same time he can access the net independently. Continuing his taxi driving work for the evening, his down time waiting for passengers is spent searching for Nacros X references on old hacking forums and IRC channels, attempting to find clues...
There's something that only he and Dallas know. A conversation which took place prior to the incident that sent him to prison. The search to confirm the re-emergence of Nacros X will depend upon a lure. He makes a post on an old forum under a pseudonym which declares Nacros X is a sellout to the cops, subtly hinting at this previous conversation. As there is nothing a computer hacker can not stand more than being discredited, the supposed Nacros X will have no choice but defend him (or her) self. Griffin just needs to hope that the bait will be taken...
Here is a suggestion with a small twist: Griffin’s occupation is a janitor at a bank. He is one of those non-descript people that white collar people do look in the eye or know their names that work during the quite hours of the night cleaning offices, but at the same time have access to every room, every desk, every computer… (I know there is a bit of Good Will Hunting in being a janitor, but still).
Griffin has taken the job because it allows him to roam around the offices in peace. Long ago he has learnt username and passwords of many people (no hacker skill required, just look at the post-it note under the mouse pad) and can surf the web in peace.
One evening he is walking past the server room he does not get to access usually, when the guy on duty in the room spills his coffee. Seeing a janitor outside, he waves Griffin in to clean while he goes to the rest room to clean himself up.
Once in the room, Griffin cannot resist the temptation and starts tapping away at the consol, the UI still open. Now he has un-restricted access to the whole system.
Just as he is discovering just how invigorating and sweet is it to once again have his hands on a major system, he hears the on-duty guy returning, and has to hurry away.
But he stumbles on some cords on the floor, trips and falls down on the floor. His mobile phone goes flying from his breast pocket and slides under a server rack.
He swears, picks up a broom form his cart and starts fishing for the phone. Two his surprise, he pulls our two phones.
While he is holding the phones, the on-duty guy walks in and angrily demands to know what Griffin is doing.
He is just to protest his innocence, when suddenly the other phones screen comes alive with words: ”Command received, executing now”. Then the screen goes blank.
While they are still staring, all servers go dark. They gasp and start to swear, but then, suddenly the servers go live again (dark only for 2-3 seconds).
Panicked, the on-duty guy orders Griffin to stand aside while he calls the security/police. When they arrive, they identify him as an ex hacker and start to treat him like a suspect.
Meanwhile, the banks IT experts find nothing wrong in the systems, just one un-explained command.
Hearing this, Griffin asks a bunch of intelligent, to the point questions that the IT guys cannot answer. This leads the IT boss to think, Griffin might be able to help.
Soon Griffin discovers the phone is the key and hacks into it.
The phone contains lots of code, meaning of which is not clear. But one thing becomes certain: there are many more phones like this out there.
And that is how the story starts: a plot where the bank is made part of an international scam to quietly and discreetly rob millions of dollars every night when banks reconcile international money transfers – little on currency rates here, little on interest payments here.
The police ask Griffin to help in solving the matter. In due course he finds out the scam spans over many countries, most of the illegal traffic is over hard to detect mobile connections, and everything is state-of-the-art. But the whole construction is also strangely familiar, built in a way that a man he once knew always operated…
The six episodes bounce around different countries; in each a bank and a mobile operator are in-voluntarily involved. Griffin and an Interpol detective assigned to the case get step-by-step closer to the villains, slowly discovering that vast quantity of money is stolen over time and thousands of bank accounts, and that the track leads to a master cyber criminal…
Since there will be six episodes, this is an idea for one of them. This will be an adventure type episode, hot sun, beautiful water diving, pretty girls, rum, danger, mystery, and humor.
Griffin Sharp must locate and recover old data tapes from a sunken ship. The data tapes contain volatile hacking program by Nacros X. X will mark the sport. He enlists divebuddy friend and underwater contractor, Nike Melson.
Ship lost at sea in early 2000s off Key West. Police were in pursuit of Benjamin Dallas, who stole the vessel and headed out to sea. Too bad luck that it turned out to be a leaky old bucket. The Coast Guard arrived too late and both Dallas and the ship disappeared. The police were finding rum bottles up and down the beach for weeks after with instructions to hand over to the authorities. The bottles had notes in them with machine code written on the notes. Sharp is brought in to break the code. Reason now, the last bottle was recovered. The code will tell them of the volatile information contained on the old date tapes.
Sharp, Melson, and the authorities are not the only ones looking for the data tapes. Whatever is on those data tapes has enormous implications. Sharp and Melson must locate the wreck and find the tapes before they fall into the wrong hands.
Possible Story Inspiration
Gary McKimmon’s story of hacking into defense department and NASA computers and downloading information on the “secret space program.” This could be a possible men in black conspiracy type plot.
Here is my dive video of Joe's Tug in Key West. Perhaps this will give you some ideas:
Griffin Sharp has only a few days to reclaim the life he once had and set the record straight. After losing his millions and being forced into jail when an old colleague set him up for a crime he had no part of, Sharp finds himself working minimum wage jobs to try and get by. While he despises the situation and his managers, he forms a friendship with a young cashier at the fast food place. As it turns out, the cashier is very aware of Sharp's past life and was a huge fan of his games back in the day. While his day job has become tolerable, his Handlers (the parole officers assigned to watch him and bring him in on police cases) are still cramping his lifestyle. One is a technological moron who insists on making Sharp's life a living hell and the other is a fair man, but is a bit too smart for his own good. Something that makes Sharp quite suspicious of him.
Things are not as bad as they could be though, Sharp's new fast food friend lets him access his computer every now and then, though it is in his mother's basement and he has formed a casual relationship with a rather attractive waitress he picks up every night in his Taxi profession. It may not be the old life he had, but it's a chance for a new start. That is, until his old colleague makes a reappearance on the net, ready to finish where he left off.
No one knows for certain whether or not this is the real Nacros X, but he appears to have the same M.O. as before. He targets random individuals and begins to pick apart their lives piece by piece. Their financial records disappear, police records are changed to make them wanted individuals or maybe even their college records are modified. Nothing is too big or small for Nacros X, if he can find a way to make your life hell, he will. However, Nacros has something even bigger planned for his grand return and he wants Sharp's help. If Sharp refuses, Nacros promises to use his old bag of tricks to destroy the lives of those around him. But how could someone possibly know about his Handlers, his new friend or even the waitress? Just how close has this mysterious figure on the net gotten to Sharp? Griffin only has a few days to protect his friends, discover Nacros' true identity and, in the process, clear his name of the past crime he was set up for.
The Internet has opened up the political scene to the public. A new voter demographic has arisen. A group of people that have gotten used to double checking sources and searching for information on their own initiative. Politicians are realizing that there is more work holding on to voters that no longer care about platitudes. In the name of hunting child pornographers, drug dealers and scammers the Internet gets subjected to more and more restrictive laws and surveillance.
This episode would follow the hunt for a child pornography cartel. But the new surveillance systems has set unexpected obstacles for our heroes. Since the new surveillance laws many more have started encrypting and anonymizing their traffic, and the surveillance super computers on decryption duty can't keep up with the increase. Even old fashioned detective work has gotten harder as what in times past could have been used as initial leads today is just a drop in a bucket with leads that could lead anywhere.
Our heroes need to deal with the frustration of having their hands tied as they may need to rely solely on the help of regular police to find a supplier paedophile whom can help them to infiltrate the cartel from within. They are faced with a hard decision when they either need to make a deal with this infiltrator letting him go free, or be forced find new child porn that hasn't been seen before by the cartel to have their own infiltrator gain access.
The obvious point is that before the surveillance laws they probably could have done this work much faster. Maybe our heroes even fail in this episode.
Charles Stross book Halting State has an interesting premise that maybe you could rework into something original. It's about a bank robbery that happens in an MMORPG.
"A near-future thriller set in the bizarre world of the software houses that develop massively-multiplayer online roleplaying games. A bank has been robbed, a start-up company's massive IPO postponed, and the company's lead programmer has gone missing. It's up to an unlikely team of investigators, sent in by the venture capitalists backing the IPO, to figure out what happened and get the money back. There's just a slight catch: the robbers were a gang of Orcs, and the money may have been smuggled over the border into another reality .... "