Hacker pleads guilty in Marriott case

Hotel News - 28/11/2011

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According to US Federal prosecutors, 26 year-old Attila Nemeth has admitted to illegally hacking his way into the hotel firm’s computers before extorting them for a job. Nemeth had transmitted malicious coding into Marriott’s system and threatened to then release confidential data to the public if he was not given a job.

He is due to be sentenced on 3 February and faces up to 10 years behind bars, plus fines.

The hacker had been able to access the company’s computer network for months, according to the plea agreement. He later communicated with US Secret Service agents, who had made a fake account after the hotel firm had notified authorities. Nemeth was then told to travel to Washington for an interview. However, he was arrested at Dulles International Airport in January after travelling from his home in Hungary on a ticket paid for by Marriott.

The plea comes following a second breach into Marriott’s confidential information in April. Epsilon, the marketing data firm holding the database as well as similar information for major companies like Hilton, Target and Dell, had been exposed by hackers and was forced to notify consumers of possible identity fraud.

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