New Developments: “Ex-Western Asset employee pleads guilty to computer intrusion”

Nate Raymond writes for REUTERS:

“An ex-employee of Western Asset Management Co pleaded guilty on Friday to repeatedly accessing his former supervisor’s email account after leaving the financial firm, conduct his lawyer said stemmed from a concern he was being criticized.

Kristopher Rocchio, who after leaving the company became a vice president at investment manager Neuberger Berman, pleaded guilty in federal court in Manhattan to a misdemeanor charge of unauthorized computer intrusion, according to court records.

In a statement Rocchio read in court, the Staten Island resident said from sometime in 2012 to February 2015, he used log-in information his former supervisor provided him while he worked at Western Asset Management to illegally read his emails.” Read more…




New Developments: “Pennsylvania Man Is Charged in Celebrity Hack, Reaches Plea Deal”


Image © NBC NEWS 2014.

Andrew Blankstein writes on NBC NEWS:

“A Pennsylvania man has been charged in the hacking of Apple and Google accounts belonging to more than 100 people, many of them celebrities, officials said on Tuesday.

Between Nov. 2012 and Sept. 2014, Ryan Collins, 36, sent fake emails that purported to be from Apple or Google, and got victims to unknowingly hand over their usernames and passwords, the U.S. Attorney for the Central District of California said.

He then used that information to get into their email accounts, swiping nude photos in some instances, and sometimes downloading full backups from Apple’s iCloud, prosecutors said in a charging document filed Tuesday.

Police began probing an apparent iCloud hack that resulted in leaked nude photos of Jennifer Lawrence and other celebrities, mostly women, in September of 2014.

Collins, of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, was charged in Los Angeles with violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act and has agreed to plead guilty to one count of unauthorized access to a protected computer to obtain information, prosecutors said.

The charge carries a maximum of five years in prison, but prosecutors will recommend a sentence of 18 months, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.” Read more…

Image above © NBC NEWS 2014.

New Developments: “Feds finally charge man who stole nude photos of celebrities in 2014”

Sarah Kaplan writes on the WASHINGTON POST:

Perhaps you have forgotten about “Celebgate,” when hundreds of nude photos of famous women, including Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton, were stolen from their Apple and Gmail accounts and shared across the shadowy back corners of the Internet. We wouldn’t blame you; it was an ugly time.

But federal authorities, it seems, did not forget.

A year and a half after the images made their way online, the U.S. attorney’s office in Los Angeles announced that it has tracked down a man who stole them.” Read more…

New Developments: SCOTUS Upholds CFAA Conviction of Former Executive

“Supreme Court Issues CFAA decision in Michael Musacchio v. United States”

Antony P. Kim, Aravind Swaminathan and Garret G. Rasmussen of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP reported:

“On Monday, January 25th, the Supreme Court issued the most recent Computer Fraud and Abuse Act decision in Michael Musacchio v. United States. After leaving his employer to start his own company, the defendant (a former executive) continued to use his password and login credentials to get access to his now former employer’s computer and e-mail system. The government charged the Musacchio with violating the CFAA for intentionally accessing his former employer’s computer systems without authorization. However, at trial the court instructed the jury incorrectly that a CFAA violation required proof that he gained unauthorized access and exceeded authorized access. The CFAA, however, only requires proof that the individual either “intentionally accesses a computer without authorization or exceeds authorized access.” The Supreme Court upheld his conviction, explaining that “[w]hen a jury finds guilt after being instructed on all elements of the charged crime plus one more element, the jury has made all the findings that due process requires.” Read more…

New Developments: Kosovar Hacker Charged With Supplying U.S. Military Personnel Info to ISIS

Malaysia arrests hacker who allegedly stole U.S. military personnel records for ISIS

Kevin Collier writes on THE DAILY DOT:

“Malaysian police have arrested an alleged hacker and accused him of helping the terrorist group Islamic State.

The FBI has accused Ardit Ferizi, known online as Th3Dir3ctorY, of leading the hacking group Kosova Hacker’s Security—which calls itself “Albania’s largest hacking group”— and helping ISIS publish the names and personal information of U.S. military personnel in September. Distributing that information online, along with instructions to attack those personnel, is a common ISIS tactic.” Read more…

New Developments: “Cannibal Cop” Decision Deepens Circuit Split On Federal Hacking Statute

from Sam Winston on TRADE SECRET INSIDER:

“Prosecutors and employers take notice — one of the most robust, wide-reaching tools against computer fraud and abuse could be blunted. The Second Circuit recently joined the Fourth and Ninth circuits in narrowly interpreting the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) in United States v. Valle, 807 F.3d 508 (2d Cir. 2015). Valle, an ex-cop, was convicted of using his access to police databases to aid his gruesome plot to kidnap, torture, and eat a woman, but the Second Circuit overturned that conviction based on its reading of the CFAA. While the Valle case made lurid headlines in the New York press, it has further reaching consequences for the CFAA. The decision deepens the circuit split against the First, Fifth, Seventh, and Eleventh circuits, which give prosecutors and employers more room to bring claims under the CFAA with a broader interpretation of the act.” Read more….