Man charged with NASA hack, on 10th anniversary of Gary McKinnon’s arrest

Graham Cluley
Graham Cluley
@[email protected]

In December 2010, computers at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory near Los Angeles were allegedly hacked. With researchers unable to use the computers for two months, NASA estimated the damage caused to be in the region of $580,000.

Not to be sniffed at.

It was with some surprise then, to hear last month that 26-year-old Robert Butyka, who admitted the hack, had managed to escape a jail sentence, and received a three-year suspended sentence from the Romanian authorities.

A separate civil case, scheduled for March, will determine what damages – if any – Butyka will have to pay.

But that’s not the end of the story – because, so far, only the Romanian authorities have had their day in court with Butyka.

Yesterday, the United States Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles announced that it was indicting Butyka, charging him with hacking into the 25 affected climate research…

Read more in my article on the Naked Security website.

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Graham Cluley is a veteran of the cybersecurity industry, having worked for a number of security companies since the early 1990s when he wrote the first ever version of Dr Solomon's Anti-Virus Toolkit for Windows. Now an independent analyst, he regularly makes media appearances and is an international public speaker on the topic of cybersecurity, hackers, and online privacy. Follow him on Twitter, Mastodon, Bluesky, or drop him an email.

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