LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Southern California man broke into thousands of Apple iCloud accounts and collected more than 620,000 private photos and videos in an effort to steal images of nude young women, federal authorities said.
Hao Kuo Chi, 40, of La Puente, has agreed to plead guilty to four felonies, including conspiracy to gain unauthorized access to a computer, the Los Angeles Times reported Monday.
Chi admitted that he impersonated Apple customer support staff in emails that tricked unsuspecting victims into providing him with their Apple IDs and passwords, according to court records cited by the Times.
He gained unauthorized access to photos and videos of at least 306 victims across the U.S., most of them young women, he acknowledged in his plea agreement with federal prosecutors in Tampa, Fla.
Chi said he hacked into the accounts of about 200 of the victims at the request of people he met online. Using the moniker “icloudripper4you,” Chi marketed himself as capable of breaking into digital accounts, he admitted in court papers.
He faces up to five years in prison for each of the four crimes.