Celebgate hacker sentenced to 18 months in federal prison

By midian182 · 15 replies
Oct 28, 2016
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  1. Back in March, it was reported that a Pennsylvania man responsible for the 2014 celebrity photo leak scandal known as ‘Celebgate’ or ‘The Fappening’ had pleaded guilty to a felony computer hacking charge. Now, Ryan Collins has been sentenced to 18 months in federal prison, the same length of time recommended by authorities earlier this year.

    36-year-old Collins faced a maximum of five years behind bars for the incident, which saw explicit photos and videos of female celebrities posted online. He used phishing techniques to access people’s cloud storage, tricking them into revealing passwords and usernames by sending fake emails in which Collins claimed to be from Apple or Google.

    After stealing information from more than 600 individuals, not all of them famous, Collins compromised over 50 iCloud and 72 Gmail accounts between November 2012 and September 2014, including those belonging to Jennifer Lawrence, Scarlett Johansson, Rihanna, Kate Upton, Hilary Duff, and many more. In some cases, he downloaded a victim’s entire iCloud backups.

    The images were leaked on anonymous image board Anon-IB before appearing on the likes of 4Chan and Reddit, though the FBI found no evidence to suggest that Collins shared or uploaded any of the stolen photos.

    A second man confessed to his part in celebgate back in July. 28-year-old Chicago, Illinois resident Edward Majerczyk also pleaded guilty to felony computer hacking charges, after he accessed the iCloud and Gmail accounts of over 300 people. Surprisingly enough, there is no evidence or suggestion that the two men worked together at any point.

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  2. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Grand Inquisitor Posts: 4,739   +3,757

    Had they only waited to release the images, they could have used the Clinton Defense and been let off without charges.

    While they clearly broke the law, I find scarce evidence of intent to harm these celebrities, which is who the laws are designed to protect. Because this evidence is lacking, I don't think any reasonable prosecutor would pursue this case in a Clintonian judicial world. It is therefore my recommendation that these men be pardoned by Barack Obama himself.
    p51d007, Hexic, IAMTHESTIG and 2 others like this.
  3. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,890   +1,224

    Unfortunately the Clintonian Defense is very difficult to pull off. When you're just an average 4-star Marine General like James Cartwright you can get a few years in jail for lying to the FBI - because lying to the FBI is a felony. If this guy Collins had only hacked a few emails showing collusion between a certain campaign and the media or maybe he should have had a friend donate $500,000 to the campaign of the wife of the deputy director of the FBI.

    Only a noob doesn't bribe the prosecutors before the investigation. Takes a lot of planning and powerful friends.
  4. stewi0001

    stewi0001 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,685   +1,084

    I wonder if they would have cared as much if the people the hacked were not celebs...
    Jamesbrah and p51d007 like this.
  5. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    Is there a difference in federal prison to state prison to county jail to local lockup? Prison is prison as far as I know and I have no intention of experiencing any of them first hand.
  6. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,046   +680

    "He used phishing techniques to access people’s cloud storage, tricking them into revealing passwords and usernames by sending fake emails..."

    This is probably why he only got 18 months. He'll be out in 12 or less with good behaviour.
  7. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Grand Inquisitor Posts: 4,739   +3,757

    There are considerable differences. Local lockup = timeout. Fed and state = different world.
    Skidmarksdeluxe and p51d007 like this.
  8. EClyde

    EClyde TS Evangelist Posts: 1,310   +434

    I sure enjoyed the pictures of _________.
    Bigtruckseries likes this.
  9. Mr Dude

    Mr Dude TS Enthusiast Posts: 64   +47

    For shame. 18 months in prison for giving the people what the people wanted.
    Doesn't that count as public service?
  10. Kenrick

    Kenrick TS Evangelist Posts: 571   +373

    Sticky keyboard and mouse anyone? It needs cleaning btw.
    Bigtruckseries likes this.
  11. risc32

    risc32 TS Addict Posts: 209   +96

    this reminds me of that scene from "office space". "federal prison is no joke. the first thing you need to do is..."
  12. Bigtruckseries

    Bigtruckseries TS Evangelist Posts: 583   +318

    That dude provided a public service.
  13. Brock Kane

    Brock Kane TS Addict Posts: 185   +104

    You mean "Federal Pound Me in the a$$ Prison"
  14. Michael7

    Michael7 TS Rookie

    It's a shame because the pictures were nice. He should be pardoned only on that account alone.
  15. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,028   +2,558

    Well, there's a huge difference between our federal prisons and the average county jail.

    Why do you think we routinely call federal prisons, "club fed"? But they do run quite a gamut between the "super max", only being allowed out of your cell for an hour a day, to a low security "camp", many of which, don't really even have fences around them, (AFAIK), certainly not walls, guard towers, and snipers, like a super max.

    As this offender is non violent, and low time, he may even start out in a camp setting. I believe prisoners with long sentences start out in at least a medium security facility, and then go to lower security centers as their time to release becomes shorter..

    The bottom line is, our " federal correctional facilities", are very, very much preferable to the local rat and roach infested county jails. And yes, they even detain a "better class of criminal". Word!

    There is one big drawback though. Federal sentences tend to be quite long, and you must serve 85% of your time. In a county prison, you might be sentenced to "9 to 24 months", and be out in 6 months. Plus, our fed still has the death penalty on the books. :eek: Annnnd then there's "Git-Mo" in Kuba for real problem children...
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2016
    Skidmarksdeluxe likes this.
  16. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    Thanks Skip.

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