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AMAZON HACKER STEALS DATA FROM 100 MILLION PEOPLE



By: Jessica Wang


Beginning on March 22nd and 23rd of 2005 to 2019, Amazon software engineer, Paige Thompson, allegedly hacked and gained access to over 100 million people’s accounts and credit cards and over 100,000 social security numbers while attempting to share the information with her online friends on social media.


Paige Thompson is a 36-year-old transgender engineer who lived in Seattle and got arrested for violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, a law that prevents hacking or accessing to a device without authorization from the owner.


Capital One, one of the largest banks in the world that specializes in credit cards and savings accounts, had many vulnerable points and weak security, allowing Thompson to breach the bank and steal data from millions of customers. Then, Thompson “allegedly” stored all the information onto Amazon’s Web Services cloud.


Thompson was caught messaging another hacker in 2019 that she wanted to archive the data so she could get it off her server because she did not want it around anymore. “Thompson bragged so much about the breach that even the other hackers expressed concern,” says dailymail.com.


One person who noticed the information that Thompson posted on GitHub wrote to Capital One of the situation and the stolen data. Capital One notified the FBI and an agent found devices belonging to Thompson connected to the breach.


Thompson’s lawyers say, “Thompson was just researching on a good faith,” but many say the opposite, stating that maybe she did research, but not on a good faith. Thompson’s lawyers say that Thompson accidentally downloaded the information, and that she was only researching the fault for good. The customer said that she was taking advantage of the fault to commit identity theft instead of helping save or fix the problem.


In 2020, Capital One agreed to pay $190 million to customers who were hacked and got their information and credit cards stolen.


In June 2022, Thompson was found guilty of violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act after ten hours of jury deliberation.



Sources:

Ex-Amazon Worker Convicted in Capital One Hacking - The New York Times.pdf

Transgender Former Amazon Employee Goes to Trial for Stealing Over 100 MILLION Capitol One Customers' Information (100percentfedup.com)

Capital One Says Hacker Breached Accounts Of 100 Million People; Ex-Amazon Employee Arrested (forbes.com)

Ex-Amazon worker accused of stealing personal data of 100M Capital One customers goes on trial | Daily Mail Online

Capital One data breach: A hacker gained access to 100 million credit card applications and accounts | CNN Business

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