• United States



by Dave Gradijan

Calif. Man Says He Hacked USC Application System

Sep 06, 20062 mins
CSO and CISOData and Information Security

Eric McCarty, a 24-year-old San Diego, Calif., resident, on Tuesday admitted in court that he hacked into a University of Southern California (USC) student application system in June 2005 after being denied admission to the school, the Associated Press reports via

Government sources say McCarty accessed the names, Social Security numbers, birth dates and USC site passwords of a handful of student applicants, according to the AP. After seizing his personal computer, federal law enforcement representatives found data pertaining to seven people who’d applied to USC, the AP reports.

McCarty entered a guilty plea in court on charges of accessing a protected computer without approval, and he is to be sentenced on Dec. 4, according to the AP. He will likely receive six months of home detention and roughly $37,000 in damages as part of a plea bargain with prosecutors, the AP reports.

Following the USC Hack, McCarty set up an e-mail account in the name of “ihackedusc,” and notified a reporter with the website of the incident, boasting that he had cracked the university’s system, according to the AP. That reporter then contacted university representatives with the information, the AP reports.

According to the AP, the following were among the comments McCarty left on his personal blog in reference to the incident: “USC Got Hacked” and “so all the hot USC girls, I got your phone number.”

In related news, a 23-year-old Oregon man was sentenced last week to a year of home detention and $10,000 in damages for hacking into a T-Mobile USA customer network in 2004 and accessing information on thousands of people—including one Secret Service agent.

Another 21-year-old man was sentenced last week to three years in prison, as well as an equal probation sentence, for his part in a “botnet” attack that victimized thousands of machines belonging to the U.S. Department of Defense, Seattle’s Northwest Hospital and California’s Colton Unified School District.

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-Compiled by Al Sacco