IT administrator with ‘keys to the kingdom’ indicted for hacking former employer

16 May 2016 Internet, IT & e-Discovery Blog Blog
Authors: Peter Vogel

With a possible sentence of 20 years in prison for hacking for a trial set for June 28, 2016 the US Attorney commented about the indictment that “IT administrators often hold the ‘keys to the kingdom’ for companies, … Disgruntled IT administrators can therefore pose a grave threat to businesses, which must take measures to protect themselves when letting such an employee go.”  On May 6, 2016 Nikishna Polequaptewa pled not guilty in federal court to on one count of unauthorized impairment of a protected computer.  The FBI reported comments about the case against Mr. Polequaptewa:

A former Garden Grove resident pleaded not guilty this afternoon to federal charges of hacking into the computer system of Blue Stone Strategy Group – an Irvine-based company and the man’s former employer – and deleting files.

According to the indictment, Blue Stone provided consulting services to Native American tribal governments throughout the United States. Polequaptewa was responsible for information technology at Blue Stone until November 2014, when he was relieved of his duties, which led to his resignation. Immediately following his resignation, Polequaptewa repeatedly accessed the Blue Stone internal server, a desktop computer, and remote accounts held by Blue Stone, and allegedly deleted various files belonging to the company.

All IT administrators my impacted by this case, but only time will tell.

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