Connecticut man hacked more than 250 people.Connecticut-based George Garofano has agreed to plead guilty to charges of hacking more than 250 Apple iCloud accounts, including many that belonged to celebrities like Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton, Miley Cyrus, and Kirsten Dust.
Garofano, 26, is the fourth the Fappening hacker that pleads guilty, after Emilio Herrera, Edward Majerczyk, and Ryan Collins. Majerczyk has already been sentenced to nine months in jail, while Collins received a sentence of 18 months behind bars. Herrera, who broke into 550 iCloud and Gmail accounts, is due to be sentenced in February.
The US Department of Justice (DoJ) says Garofano ran a phishing scheme between April 2013 and October 2014 to steal usernames and passwords for accessing iCloud accounts. He sent emails to his targets, including a series of US celebrities, claiming to work for Apple and requesting the login credentials or recommending passwords resets though a fake website that looked similar to Apple’s.
Five years in prison
Garofano, however, isn’t the one who leaked the nude content to the web, but instead he’s believed to have traded the usernames and passwords, as well as X-rated photos that he obtained following the hack, with other individuals who haven’t been named in the lawsuit.
The US DoJ says Garofano admitted in his plea statement that he got access to content belonging to the celebrities. “Garofano used the usernames and passwords to illegally access his victims’ iCloud accounts, which allowed him to steal personal information, including sensitive and private photographs and videos,” a press release (which you can read in full in the box after the jump) reads.
The 26-year-old hacker has pleaded guilty and he now faces a maximum sentence of five years in federal prison.
“Although many of Garofano’s victims were members of the entertainment industry in Los Angeles, many non-celebrities who live in Connecticut were also victimized,” the DoJ continued.
X-rated photos allegedly stolen from various celebrities are still being posted online these days, though it’s not clear just yet if these are part of the original Fappening hack or have been obtained following other recent hacks.