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AHH 24-Hr. News

Vietnam Veterans to Lead Tours of Memorial and Museum
Tuesday, 29 July 2014
Holmdel, N.J.  – The New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation is offering free tours of the Museum and Memorial led by... Read More...
Highlands Community Singers at Clamfest Saturday
Tuesday, 29 July 2014
HIGHLANDS, NJ - The Highlands Community Singers will kick off Saturday's entertainment at the annual Clam Festival with a performance at noon,... Read More...
Joint Presbyterian Service Sunday
Tuesday, 29 July 2014
ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS, NJ - The First Presbyterian Church of Atlantic Highlands and the Hope Presbyterian Church of Tinton Falls will conduct... Read More...
IMAGE Mayor Declares July 13 William Kennelly, Sr. Day
Monday, 28 July 2014
PHOTO: From left to right: Mayor Stephanie Murray,  Firefighter William Kennelly Sr., Fire Chief Peter Laimann, and 3rd Assistant Chief... Read More...
IMAGE 7 New Middletown Police Officers Take the Oath
Monday, 28 July 2014
PHOTO: Officer Erica Weeks is sworn in.  Her father, Timothy Weeks, is holding the Bible. MIDDLETOWN- The Middletown Township Police Department... Read More...

Columns

IMAGE Adoption Involving Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
by Daniel J. Vance
Saturday, 26 July 2014
Laura Bloch adored his picture. “My husband and I had just been approved through an adoption agency and the agency sent out a letter with a picture... Read More...
IMAGE Is It The Shadow?
by Woody Zimmerman
Friday, 25 July 2014
“Who knows what evil lurks in the heart of man? (Hoo-hoo-hoo-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!) The Shadow...” Starting in the 1930s, and extending well into... Read More...
IMAGE Spectator’s Observations
by George Hancock-Stefan
Thursday, 24 July 2014
During the World Cup, I watched as many games as possible. I watched them here at home, I watched a couple of games in Turkey where they were... Read More...
IMAGE What Does the Fox Say?
by Anne Mikolay
Thursday, 24 July 2014
As a long-time Middletown resident and a nature lover, I have seen my share of backyard critters. We have mice, voles, squirrels, raccoons, skunks,... Read More...
IMAGE Skewed View - July 24, 2014
by Tom Brennan
Thursday, 24 July 2014
I created a page called "Fact Jack".  If you want, like it on Facebook http://bit.ly/FactJackFb or follow on... Read More...

Upcoming Events

Tue Jul 29 @ 3:00PM - 04:30PM
Free Summer Mini-Camp
Wed Jul 30 @ 3:00PM - 04:30PM
Free Summer Mini-Camp
Mon Aug 04 @ 8:00PM -
Middletown Township Committee Workshop Meeting
Tue Aug 05 @ 3:00PM - 04:30PM
Free Summer Mini-Camp
Wed Aug 06 @ 3:00PM - 04:30PM
Free Summer Mini-Camp

NEWARK, NJ—The head of a self-described “security research” hacking group was sentenced today to 41 months in prison for breaching AT&T’s servers, stealing e-mail addresses and other personal information belonging to approximately 120,000 Apple iPad users, and disclosing that information to an Internet magazine, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.

Andrew Auernheimer, 27, of New York, was convicted November 20, 2012, on both counts of a superseding indictment: conspiracy to access AT&T’s servers without authorization and disclose that information to a reporter at Gawker magazine and possession and transfer of means of identification for more than 120,000 iPad users. Auernheimer was tried before U.S. District Judge Susan D. Wigenton, who imposed the sentence today in Newark federal court. His co-conspirator, Daniel Spitler, 27, of San Francisco, California, previously pleaded guilty to the same charges and is awaiting sentencing.

“Andrew Auernheimer knew he was breaking the law when he and his partner hacked into AT&T’s servers and stole personal information from unsuspecting iPad users,” U.S. Attorney Fishman said. “When it became clear that he was in trouble, he concocted the fiction that he was trying to make the Internet more secure and that all he did was walk in through an unlocked door. The jury didn’t buy it, and neither did the court in imposing sentence upon him today.”

“Auernheimer coordinated a self-serving cyber attack on a United States corporation and tens of thousands of innocent customers, in order to promote his business,” FBI Acting Special Agent in Charge David Velazquez said. “Immediately after the attack he attempted to hide all the evidence. Auernheimer’s conviction and today’s sentence signifies the continued and growing efforts of the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the FBI in investigating and prosecuting computer hacking and intellectual property crimes.”

According to documents filed in this case and the evidence at trial:

The iPad is a touch-screen tablet computer, developed and marketed by Apple Computers Inc., that allows users to, among other things, access the Internet and send and receive e-mail. Since its introduction in January 2010, AT&T has provided iPad users with Internet connectivity via AT&T’s 3G wireless network. During the registration process for subscribing to the network, a user is required to provide an e-mail address, billing address, and password.

Prior to mid-June 2010, AT&T automatically linked an iPad 3G user’s e-mail address to the Integrated Circuit Card Identifier (ICC-ID), a number unique to the user’s iPad, when he or she registered. Every time a user accessed the AT&T website, the ICC-ID was recognized and the e-mail address was automatically populated for faster, user-friendly access to the site. AT&T kept the ICC-IDs and associated e-mail addresses confidential.

At that time, when an iPad 3G communicated with AT&T’s website, its ICC-ID was automatically displayed in the Universal Resource Locator, or URL, of the AT&T website in plain text. Seeing this, and discovering that each ICC-ID was connected to an iPad 3G user e-mail address, hackers wrote a script termed the “iPad 3G Account Slurper” and deployed it against AT&T’s servers.

The Account Slurper attacked AT&T’s servers for several days in early June 2010 and was designed to harvest as many ICC-ID/e-mail address pairings as possible. It worked by mimicking the behavior of an iPad 3G so that AT&T’s servers would be deceived into granting the Account Slurper access. Once deployed, the Account Slurper used a process known as a “brute force” against the servers, randomly guessing at ranges of ICC-IDs. An incorrect guess was met with no additional information, while a correct guess was rewarded with an ICC-ID/e-mail pairing for a specific, identifiable iPad 3G user.

From June 5, 2010 through June 9, 2010, the Account Slurper stole for its hacker-authors approximately 120,000 ICC-ID/e-mail address pairings for iPad 3G customers.

Immediately following the theft, the hacker-authors of the Account Slurper provided the stolen e-mail addresses and ICC-IDs to the website Gawker, which published the stolen information in redacted form, along with an article concerning the breach. The article indicated that the breach “exposed the most exclusive e-mail list on the planet,” and named a number of famous individuals whose e-mails had been compromised, including Diane Sawyer, Harvey Weinstein, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and then-White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel. The article also stated that iPad users could be vulnerable to spam marketing and malicious hacking. A group calling itself “Goatse Security” was identified as obtaining the subscriber data.

Goatse Security is a so-called “security research” group, composed of Internet hackers, to which both Spitler and Auernheimer belonged.

During the data breach, co-defendant Daniel Spitler and Auernheimer communicated with one another using Internet Relay Chat, an Internet instant messaging program. Those chats not only demonstrated that Spitler and Auernheimer were responsible for the data breach, but also that they conducted the breach to simultaneously damage AT&T and promote themselves and Goatse Security. As the data breach continued, so, too, did the discussions between Spitler, Auernheimer, and other Goatse Security members about the best way to take advantage of the breach and associated theft. On June 10, 2010, immediately after going public with the breach, Spitler and Auernheimer discussed destroying evidence of their crime.

In addition to the prison term, Judge Wigenton sentenced Auernheimer to three years of supervised release and ordered him to pay restitution of $73,162.

U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Acting Special Agent in Charge David Velazquez in Newark, with the investigation leading to the charges. He also thanked special agents of the FBI, under the direction of then-Special Agent in Charge Valerie Parlave in Little Rock, Arkansas, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Arkansas, under the direction of U.S. Attorney William Conner Eldridge.

The government is represented by Executive Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Martinez and Assistant U.S. Attorney Zach Intrater of the Computer Hacking and Intellectual Property Section of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Economic Crimes Unit.