Last week, a federal district court judge sentenced a former IT manager who pleaded guilty to cracking into the computer system of his former employer, Manufacturing Electronic Sales Corporation, downloading confidential proprietary information, reading e-mails of the company president and deleting files from MESC's servers. He also admitted and pleaded guilty to obstructing justice when he deleted information from his new employer's computers in order to cover his tracks.
In pleading guilty to these crimes, Mark Erfurt, a former IT manager, admitted that, on January 23 and 24, 2003, he hacked into the computer system of MESC by using a computer from his workplace at a separate company in Irvine, California. Mr. Erfurt had previously served as the Information Technology Manager and then as Network Manager for MESC. After gaining unauthorized access to MESC's computer system, Erfurt admitted that he downloaded a proprietary database, read the email account of the MESC's president, and deleted data from the company's servers. Mr. Erfurt also admitted to obstructing justice in the FBI's ensuing investigation of these events by deleting data from his new employer's computers in an effort to destroy the evidence of his illegal computer intrusions. Erfurt was sentenced to five months imprisonment, five months home confinement, three years probation and $42,000 in restitution.