Reuters social media editor charged with aiding hackers in defacing LA Times website

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The Justice Department has filed charges against the deputy social media editor at Reuters, Matthew Keys, for allegedly helping the hacker group Anonymous access the computer servers of Keys’s former employer, the Tribune Company. If convicted, he could face up to 10 years in prison.

According to the indictment, Keys was terminated as a web producer for Tribune’s Sacramento-based television station KTXL FOX 40 in October 2010. In December 2010, he allegedly shared a working username and password for the Tribune Co.’s content management system on an online forum, and told hackers to “go fuck some shit up.” A member of the group subsequently defaced a Los Angeles Times article, changing a headline from “Pressure builds in House to pass tax-cut package“ to “Pressure builds in House to elect CHIPPY 1337.”

Keys joined Reuters in January 2012. He is well known for his prolific Twitter feed and has reported on Anonymous for Reuters. One of his stories was a first-person account of the very chatroom where he is accused of having aided the hackers who defaced the LA Times site.

Here is the full text of the indictment:

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