Florida woman fired, then “unleashed” company computer system
A Florida woman has been convicted of wreaking digital havoc on a computer system after being fired by her employer.
The woman, Medghyne Calonge, was convicted of intentionally causing damage to a protected computer and recklessly causing damage. The United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York announced the guilty verdict earlier this month.
Calonge began acting after being fired by a Manhattan-based online professional services provider, where she served as a human resources manager at the company’s office in St. Petersburg, Florida. Authorities did not specify the company.
On June 28, 2019, Calonge was fired for “failing to meet the minimum requirements of her job after, among other things, inappropriately downgrading a coworker’s access to a computer system following an argument with the colleague, “the US attorney’s office said.
Before being escorted out of the building, Calonge was seen by two company employees “repeatedly pressing the delete key on her desktop computer.”
Calonge later logged into the company’s computer system which was used to manage job applications at the company.
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Over the next two days, she “raged through [the system] deleting more than 17,000 job applications and resumes, and leaving messages containing profanity inside the system, ”according to the US attorney’s office.
In the end, she destroyed all of the company data in that computer system, forcing the company to spend over $ 100,000 to rebuild the system.
The case is being handled by the US Attorney’s Complex Fraud and Cybercrime Unit. The conviction for the crimes will come later.
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Earlier this year, a federal grand jury in Cleveland returned a charge against software developer Davis Lu, accused of executing malicious code on his employer’s computer servers.
On August 4, 2019, the company’s servers “suffered a disruption that crashed production servers and prevented employees from accessing those servers,” the North Ohio District Attorney’s Office said. in an announcement in April.
The company investigated the source of the problem and discovered unauthorized code installed on a server, “causing that server to create an infinite loop and hang,” according to the indictment.
It was also alleged that the company found code that deleted files associated with user profiles.
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An indictment is only an indictment and does not constitute proof of guilt, the US attorney’s office said.
In another case, a man, who worked as an IT administrator at a medical center, was fired. He then accessed the employer’s network without authorization.
Then he proceeded to delete the user accounts of the employees of the medical center, deactivate the computer accounts and delete his file server, the Delaware District Attorney’s Office noted.
He was sentenced to six months of home confinement.