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Comcast hacker gets 4 months from judge

Aug. 10, 2010 at 4:48 PM   |   Comments

SEATTLE, Aug. 10 (UPI) -- A federal judge in Seattle sentenced a computer hacker to four months detention and ordered him to pay Comcast for damages caused by a 2008 hacker intrusion.

James Black, 20, of Tumwater, Wash., will have to come up with $128,000 to compensate the company for the incident that knocked out its e-mail system for hours and left around 20 million customers unable to send or receive.

U.S. District Judge Benjamin Settle agreed with prosecutors that the impact of the supposed prank should not be underestimated, SEATTLEPI.COM said Tuesday.

"It's hard to fully state the seriousness of an offense of this kind," Settle said during Monday's hearing. "The number of lives that are affected by this is huge."

Black, who was 18 at the time, was one of three teenage computer whizzes who worked their way into the Comcast system. He maintained that the trio, who called themselves the Kryogenics, had not intended to cause any trouble and had attempted to contact Comcast after they had breached the security wall.

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