Industry News

Stratfor Hacker Faces 10 Years in Prison

The Anonymous member arrested for hacking security analysis company Stratfor faces 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to hacking and conspiracy to commit access device fraud, according to cNET. In the attack last year, Jeremy Hammond took confidential data from Stratfor’s clients, including the U.S. Army, Lockheed Martin, U.S. Air Force, Department of Defense, and the Bank of America.

Stratfor Hacker Faces 10 Years in Prison“As part of each of these hacks, I took and decimated confidential information stored on computer systems websites used by each of the entities,” Jeremy Hammond told the judge, according to the Associated Press. “For each of these hacks, I knew what I was doing was against the law.”

The 28 year-old was arrested together with several other hacktivists after Lulzsec leader Hector Xavier Monsegur allegedly turned them in. Hammond was part of the Anonymous-affiliated group Antisec, which took credit for the Stratfor attack in December 2011.

Hammond is accused of publishing 860,000 e-mail addresses and credit card numbers, which he later used to steal over $700,000.

In a 2005 interview for the Chicago Reader, Hammond told journalists he could program video games before he was 10, and he considered himself a “hacktivist” who fights for causes he believes in, but never for profit.

His relatives believe that, even though he admitted to the charges, he shouldn’t face such a harsh sentence for an “act of protest from which he did not personally benefit.” The alleged hacker also has a support community online. One website, freehammond.com, describes him as “one of the few true electronic Robin Hoods.”

In total, Stratfor lost over $1.75 million after the cyber-attack, being forced to give free subscriptions, digital books, and credit-monitoring services to affected users. Judges also ordered Stratfor to pay attorney fees for a client who sued them after the attack. Hackers stated Stratfor was “clueless… when it comes to database security.”

About the author

Bianca STANESCU

Bianca Stanescu, the fiercest warrior princess in the Bitdefender news palace, is a down-to-earth journalist, who's always on to a cybertrendy story. She's the industry news guru, who'll always keep a close eye on the AV movers and shakers and report their deeds from a fresh new perspective. Proud mother of one, she covers parental control topics, with a view to valiantly cutting a safe path for children through the Internet thicket. She likes to let words and facts speak for themselves.