- Michael Hogue, an Arizona man linked to an organization accused in a massive hacking incident, was sentenced to five years of probation on Friday.
- Hogue pleaded guilty to co-creating malware distributed by the Blackshades organization and "conspiring to commit computer hacking," according to a Reuters report.
- "Blackshades Remote Access Tool" gave hackers remote access control to Microsoft-Windows operating systems and was used to hack into a million computers worldwide.
The Blackshades tool allowed hackers to freeze people's computers in exchange for a ransom, prosecutors said. In 2014, authorities arrested 100 people for their involvement in the international organization.
Known online by the name "xVisceral," Hogue pleaded guilty in 2013 to distributing malware and conspiring to commit computer hacking. In 2010, he was caught in a sting operation when he contacted an undercover agent running a website targeting the illegal trade in credit card numbers, court papers said. In 2012, Hogue was arrested in an international takedown stemming from the sting. He subsequently agreed to cooperate with authorities in their investigation of Blackshades.
As part of his sentencing, Hogue was also ordered to forfeit $40,000 and perform 500 hours of community service.