Categories: SecurityWorkspace

Hacker Jailed After Stealing 8m Customers’ Data

A 23-year-old hacker has been sent to prison after he used Trojans to pilfer eight million personal identities, according to reports.

Edward Pearson, from York, was able to acquire the data using malware like Zeus and Spyeye, taking information on credit cards, PayPal accounts as well as dates of birth, postcodes and names.

Police said he could have gotten away with £834,000 if he had used the stolen data more effectively, yet he only accrued £2,351 illicitly, York paper the Press reported.

Pearson has been jailed for 26 months, whilst girlfriend Cassandra Mennim admitted two counts of obtaining services dishonestly and was given 12 months’ supervision.

A reminder

“Let this be a small reminder. You can blame a third-party for being hacked or insufficiently protected against a computer attack, but you will face quite a hassle to recuperate your losses if your details are stolen,” said Sophos’ Naked Security blogger Carole Theriault. “If you hear that a service or provider you use has been hit, change your password as soon as you are alerted.”

Police have been clamping down hard on cyber criminals of late. In mid-March, 14 were arrested over a phishing scam that saw £1 million stolen from one victim.

Earlier this week it emerged LulzSec suspect Ryan Cleary was re-arrested after he broke his bail conditions. Cleary contacted LulzSec leader Sabu over the Christmas period when he was supposed to be banned from the internet.

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Thomas Brewster

Tom Brewster is TechWeek Europe's Security Correspondent. He has also been named BT Information Security Journalist of the Year in 2012 and 2013.

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