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Christopher Chaney's hacks led to nude photos of Scarlett Johansson, Christina Aguilera and Mila Kunis ending up on gossip websites.
A 35-year-old clerical worker from Florida has pleaded guilty to hacking into the email accounts of more than 50 Hollywood celebrities.
The National Post says that Christopher Chaney's hacks led to nude photos of Scarlett Johansson, Christina Aguilera and Mila Kunis ending up on gossip websites.
The indictments against him include unauthorized computer access, wiretapping and other felony charge, The Express Tribune reports.
The newspaper adds that he faces up to 60 years in prison when sentenced in July.
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“Today’s guilty pleas shine a bright light on the dark underworld of computer hacking,” United States Attorney Andre Birotte Jr, whose office prosecuted the case is quoted as saying. “This case demonstrates that everyone, even public figures, should take precautions to shield their personal information from the hackers that inhabit that dark underworld."
Forbes explains how Chaney obtained the email addresses of celebrities. He then searched online and used publicly available information to crack security questions and 'forgot your password' features.
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He then downloaded confidential documents and photographs to his home computer, and changed email setting so that copies of his victims' emails would be sent to an account he controlled.
His activities were uncovered by an FBI investigation dubbed "Operation Hackerazzi" and he was arrested in October 2011, the Associated Press says.
After his arrest Chaney said he had become addicted to prying into the affairs of movie stars and did not know how to stop, the ABC reports.
Chaney initially had pleaded not guilty and had been free on bail. However, he changed his plea when he appeared at the Los Angeles Court on Monday.
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