What do you do when AOL takes away your accounts? Hack into their network of course! A 17 year old teenager was angry that AOL took away his accounts, so to solve the problem on his own, he hacked into their network to try and get them back.
But, he didn’t stop there. Instead he went on a mini-rampage over a 3 1/2 month period, and during that time he gained access to billing records, addresses, and credit card information (although he denies any interest in doing so for financial gain). He also infected a call center with a program that would funnel the information from the center in India, right back to his computer in New York.
According to PC World, this incident has cost them over $500,000. AOL caught on to something after a few months and began an investigation. The teenager’s subscriber information and IP address ultimately pointed to the teenager at which point AOL passed it on to the police.
One of the first things that I thought of was why did AOL take away his accounts in the first place? There must have been a good reason, wouldn’t you think? While this sounds like an isolated incident, it appears as though the teenager may have been part of a “loosely coupled” group of hackers that had their sights set on companies like AOL.
Another thought was security. Was this kid that good? Or could AOL spend some extra money to beef up their security system. Three and a half months is a long time for someone to have access to a network undetected. Could AOL have prevented this altogether?
Source: Thanks Cory!