pbs lulzsec

Twenty-year-old Raynaldo Rivera may spend the next 15 years of his life in jail if he is found guilty of hacking into Sony Pictures. The FBI arrested the alleged LulzSec hacker in Arizona yesterday.

Though LulzSec has disbanded since its “50 days of Lulz,” or the 50 days in which the group wrecked hacking havoc on a number of sites, including Sony, the FBI is still rounding up its members. According to CNET, Rivera faces charges of conspiracy and unauthorized impairment of a protected computer for allegedly hacking into the computer systems of Sony Pictures in 2011.

Anonymous hacked into Sony’s PlayStation Network servers in April 2011, stealing a large number of players’ personal information. Reacting to the hack, Sony took down PSN for 24 days, meaning customers were unable to play their games online or access the network’s community for nearly a month. As a result, Sony was not only slapped with a lawsuit, but Lulzsec then turned its eyes toward Sony Pictures.

LulzSec and Anonymous are two different hacking entities with different goals. LulzSec has since dissolved, whereas Anonymous continues hacking, often for political reasons.

At the time, LulzSec said it compromised sensitive information of around 1 million SonyPictures.com users and also published instructions on how to also hack the website and “plunder those 3.5 million music coupons while they can.”

The hackers also reveleaed that the data they stole using a SQL injection attack was unencrypted — an embarrassing point for Sony, which presumably should have known to encrypt its user data after the PSN hack.

As CNET notes, the first Lulzsec member associated with the Sony Pictures hack was arrested in Arizona by the FBI in September 2011. Cody Kretsinger of Pheonix was indicted then for the same charges that Rivera faces.

via CNET; LulzSec image via openfly/Flickr