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    NPR: Man Accused of Sex Extortion Via Computer

    National Public Radio reports on a man accused of hacking into computers to access private, sex videos and blackmailing women with exposure of the private data to which he gained access:

    A California computer hacker took over more than 100 computers and used them to extort sexually explicit videos from women and teenage girls by threatening to release their personal data, federal prosecutors charged Tuesday.

    Luis Mijangos, 31, of Santa Ana, Calif., was arrested at his home by FBI agents and was scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday afternoon on a charge of extortion that carries a maximum federal prison sentence of two years, according to a statement from the U.S. attorney’s office. [,,,]

    According to an affidavit, Mijangos sent out files disguised as popular songs that contained malicious computer code. The malware infected the victims’ computers and was passed to their friends’ and relatives’ machines in the form of infected instant messages, authorities said. […]

    He also hacked e-mail accounts and, posing as some victims’ boyfriends, asked them to make pornographic videos, authorities said.

    Occasionally, Mijangos was able to remotely turn on some victims’ webcams to catch them in “intimate situations,” the U.S. attorney’s statement said.

    Prosecutors contend that Mijangos contacted some victims and threatened to distribute their sexually explicit videos to their computer contacts unless they made additional videos for him or if they went to the police.

    He infected more than 100 computers that were used by about 230 people, including at least 44 who were minors, the FBI said.

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