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Texas Man Sentenced to 57 Months in Prison for Hacking Major Tech Firm

Tyler C. King, a 31-year-old from Dallas, Texas, was sentenced this week to 57 months in prison for crimes related to the hacking of an unnamed major tech company based in New York.

King was convicted on computer fraud and aggravated identity theft charges in November 2019. In June 2020, he also pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice charges related to fake evidence that he provided during his trial.

According to the Justice Department, King gained access to the technology firm’s systems in 2015 with the help of Ashley St. Andria, who at the time was an employee of the company. The two gained access to the company’s network and created admin accounts that gave them access to the emails of senior executives, personnel files, financial documents, and other proprietary information.

Once the company detected the intrusion and disabled the rogue admin accounts, King and St. Andria once again gained access to its networks and stole business records. Authorities say the hackers bypassed the victim’s security systems “through a series of sophisticated steps.”

In addition to prison, King’s sentence also includes 2 years of supervised release, a fine of $15,000 and over $21,000 in restitution.

“Tyler King hacked into a major technology company, damaged its systems, stole its data, and laughed about it, all from the comfort of his sofa in Texas. He will now serve 57 months in federal prison,” stated U.S. Attorney Grant C. Jaquith. “Those interested in hiding behind their keyboards to steal information and damage property should take today’s sentence as a stark reminder that computer hacking is a serious business with serious consequences. I thank the FBI for its exceptional work in bringing King to justice.”

St. Andria was sentenced to time served and 2 years of supervised release in March 2020, after pleading guilty to computer fraud charges in August 2018.

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Eduard Kovacs (@EduardKovacs) is a contributing editor at SecurityWeek. He worked as a high school IT teacher for two years before starting a career in journalism as Softpedia’s security news reporter. Eduard holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial informatics and a master’s degree in computer techniques applied in electrical engineering.