Feeds

Inmate hacked prison network, broke into employee database

Plymouth County's not-so-protected computer

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

SANS - Survey on application security programs

A former prison inmate has been arrested and charged with hacking the facility's computer network, stealing personal details of more than 1,100 prison employees and making them available to fellow inmates.

Francis G. Janosko, 42, gained access to the names, addresses, dates of birth, social security numbers and telephone numbers of employees working for the Plymouth County Correctional Facility in Massachusetts, according to an indictment unsealed Wednesday in US District Court in Boston. Using a thin client that was connected to a prison server, the prisoner was able to access an employee database by exploiting a bug in legal research software made available to inmates.

Once he obtained the personal information of the employees, he made it accessible to other inmates. Janosko also managed to obtain the username and password to a prison management program, and to access the internet to download videos and digital photographs of prison employees, inmates and aerial shots of the prison. The accused hacking took place between October 2006 and February 2007.

"Although the legal research computer server was connected through the prison's network to the internet solely so that it could obtain updates to its Windows operating system, the legal research server was configured to disallow access to the worldwide web," the indictment stated. Computer use was limited to legal research only; use of the internet was forbidden.

Janosko is charged with one count each of aggravated identity theft and intentional damage to a protected computer. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 12 years in prison and a fine of $250,000. He could also be forced to pay unspecified restitution.

According to The Boston Globe, Janosko was arrested in 2005 on child pornography charges after investigators discovered nude photos of children on his cellphone. It was the third time he faced such charges, The Globe reported. He was listed as a Level 3, or high-risk, sex offender in Massachusetts in 2005. ®

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

More from The Register

next story
Parent gabfest Mumsnet hit by SSL bug: My heart bleeds, grins hacker
Natter-board tells middle-class Britain to purée its passwords
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Web data BLEEDOUT: Users to feel the pain as Heartbleed bug revealed
Vendors and ISPs have work to do updating firmware - if it's possible to fix this
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.