Matthew Keys, a deputy social media editor at Reuters, has been charged in a Department of Justice Indictment for allegedly conspiring with members of the hacker group “Anonymous” to hack into a Tribune Company website.According to the DOJ press release, Keys, a former web producer for the Tribune Co.-owned Sacramento-based television station KTXL FOX 40, was charged with providing members of the group with log-in credentials for a Tribune Co. computer server after he had been fired from his job.
According to the indictment, he allegedly told hackers to “go f— some s— up.”
From the press release (emphasis added):
According to the indictment, Keys identified himself on an Internet chat forum as a former Tribune Company employee and provided members of Anonymous with a login and password to the Tribune Company server. After providing log-in credentials, Keys allegedly encouraged the Anonymous members to disrupt the website. According to the indictment, at least one of the computer hackers used the credentials provided by Keys to log into the Tribune Company server, and ultimately that hacker made changes to the web version of a Los Angeles Times news feature.
The indictment further alleges that Keys had a conversation with the hacker who claimed credit for the defacement of the Los Angeles Times website. The hacker allegedly told Keys that Tribune Company system administrators had thwarted his efforts and locked him out. Keys allegedly attempted to regain access for that hacker, and when he learned that the hacker had made changes to a Los Angeles Times page, Keys responded, “nice.”
The Tribune Company declined comment. We’ve reached out to Keys and Reuters as well.
Keys’ arraignment is scheduled for April 12 in Sacramento, according to the indictment. He is facing up to 10 years in prison if convicted, according to the release.
The date of the alleged hack wasn’t immediately clear, but a commenter at the site The Motley Fool noted a page that had been hacked on the Los Angeles Times’ website on Dec. 14, 2010.
On March 21, 2011, an Anonymous-affiliated Twitter account mentioned Keys:
Politico’s Dylan Byers notes Keys’ first blog entry at Reuters:
— Matthew Keys (@TheMatthewKeys) February 3, 2012
Keys was still tweeting from his account at 4:11 p.m. ET today, approximately 25 minutes before the news broke.
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