Notorious recidivist hacker Ehud Tenenbaum has pleaded guilty to credit card fraud as part of a plea bargaining agreement with US authorities in a multi-million dollar fraud case.
Tenenbaum, known as The Analyzer, pleaded guilty to a single count of fraud over his involvement in a sophisticated computer hacking scam reckoned to have cost US banks as much as $10m. The Israeli national faced similar charges in Canada but agreed to voluntary extradition to the US earlier this year, Wired reports.
The 29-year-old allegedly masterminded a scheme that involved hacking into the systems of financial services firms and transferring funds into pre-paid debit card accounts under the control of his partners in crime.
Tenenbaum is well known to US authorities. Ten years ago he was convicted in his native Israel of breaking into unclassified computer systems run by NASA, the Pentagon, the Israeli parliament and Hamas. He received only a suspended sentence and a fine after being prosecuted for his offences in Israel.
His notoriety helped him to get security consulting work with Israeli businesses. Thereafter he dropped out of the news for almost a decade before his arrest in Canada last year.
The twice-convicted hacker faces a sentencing hearing on 19 November where he faces a maximum of 15 years in jail, though in practice his probable cooperation with US authorities on other cybercrime cases is likely to result in a far more lenient sentence. ®