California man accused of ‘sextortion’ of more than 350 women pleads guilty
A southern California man accused of hacking into women’s online accounts and using their personal information to blackmail them pleaded guilty last week, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Karen “Gary” Kazaryan of Glendale, 27, was arrested in January for hacking into hundreds of women’s Facebook, Skype, and e-mail accounts and extorting them into sending him nude pictures.
He pleaded guilty to one count of identity theft and one count of unauthorized access to a protected computer. Kazaryan faces up to seven years in prison.
After taking control of his victim’s account, Kazaryan searched for nude or semi-nude pictures of them, according to the FBI. Kazaryan repeatedly contacted victims to demand that they expose their breasts to him on Skype, and also used their email and Facebook accounts to make contact with other victims. Kazaryan allegedly posted nude photos of some victims on their Facebook pages when they failed to comply with his demands.
The FBI estimated that Kazaryan victimized more than 350 women. They discovered about 3,000 nude or semi-nude pictures of women on his computer.
Ars Technica reported that Kazaryan was “reliably dumb” about covering his tracks. Authorities simply asked Facebook for the IP addresses used to access the compromised accounts and were able to quickly locate him.
[“Stock Photo: Hacker Stealing Data From A Computer” on Shutterstock]