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Quadsys Five enter 'not guilty' pleas to Crown court charges

Five men allegedly involved in hacking rival security reseller stand in the dock

The fraud case against five men from security reseller Quadsys will go to trial in September after they pleaded not guilty to allegations of hacking into a rival’s database to plunder customer and pricing data.

The individuals charged include MD Paul Cox, owner Paul Streeter, director Alistair Barnard, account manager Steve Davies and security consultant Jon Townsend, who were arrested last March and charged in August 2015 with conspiracy to commit fraud by false representation.

In a plea and case management hearing at Oxford Crown Court yesterday – the third attempt – all five pleaded not guilty to one count of securing unauthorised access to computer material with intent, contrary to the Computer Misuse Act 1990, a court clerk confirmed.

A new charge was added by the Crown of securing access to computer material without criminal intent and Townsend pleaded guilty to this, the court told us.

Cox also faced a charge of blackmail, to which he pleaded not guilty.

The original fraud charges against the Quadsys Five were swapped for computer misuse charges on the judge's orders.

The court clerk said the full trial is set for 5 September but an application was made by the defence to stay or drop the count of unauthorised access with intent, and this is expected to be decided on 6 May.

Oxfordshire-based Quadsys sells security software from Websense, Checkpoint, Trend Micro, Trustwave, F-Secure, Juniper Networks, GFI, MessageLabs and Clearswift. Its customers include Leeds United FC, Derry City Council, South Tyne and Wear Primary Care Trust, the ASA, and Cokethorpe School, a private institution.

There is no suggestion any of these organisations were aware of the allegations against Quadsys. ®

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