A former senior figure from LulzSec, the hacktivist group associated with Anonymous, has assisted the FBI in foiling more than 300 attacks since he was arrested in 2011.
‘Sabu’, real name Hector Xavier Monsegur, will be sentenced on Tuesday after facing charges for his involvement in hacking attacks while part of the group, but as a result of his cooperation, officials have recommended a reduced sentence of time served.
Monsegur has already pleaded guilty to nine counts related to computer hacking, and the maximum sentence he could be handed is 26 years. LulzSec was a spin off group formed in 2011 by Monsegur and other members of the more widely known hacktivist group Anonymous.
Prosecuters say the group carried out hacks on the computer servers of companies like Fox Television, Nintendo and Sony.
Information the authorities subsequently received from Monsegur led to the prosecution of Anonymous hacktivist Jeremy Hammond, who was last year given a 10 year prison sentence for leaking details hacked from an intelligence firm.
According to court documents, Monsegur’s cooperation saved “millions of dollars” of damage and was “extraordinarily valuable and productive”.
“”The FBI estimates that it was able to disrupt or prevent at least 300 separate computer hacks in this fashion,” documents said.
“Although difficult to quantify, it is likely that Monsegur’s actions prevented at least millions of dollars in loss to these victims.”
In the UK, three British members of LulzSec last year pleaded guilty to carrying out hacks with the group on targets including the NHS and News International.