FOXBORO — An employee of a local high-speed internet access provider, fired for misconduct, was sentenced to prison Monday for hacking into the company’s computer and deleting customer profiles.
Colby Anderson, 26, formerly of Wrentham, was sentenced in U.S. District Cort in Boston to four months in prison and four months of home confinement followed by two years of probation, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.
Prosecutors are asking that the defendant pay $70,725 in restitution but the amount will be determined at a later date after a hearing before U.S. District Court Judge William Young.
Anderson, who currently lives in Brockton, pleaded guilty in May to violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Anderson was charged in October 2018 and released on conditions.
In July 2018, Anderson was terminated from his position as a network operations center technician at Blueport Wireless in Foxboro for smoking inside the building, according to court records.
The company, a high-speed internet access provider, serves customers primarily in the hospitality industry, including top hotel chains nationwide, according to court records.
Following his termination, Anderson’s credentials to the company’s equipment were disabled but he used his former colleagues’ account login information to delete approximately 120 customer configuration profiles, causing widespread internet service issues at customer facilities, according to prosecutors.
Blueport Wireless reported the August 2, 2018 hacking to Foxboro police. Through open source tools, according to court records, Foxboro police determined the IP address that led to the identification of the defendant.
A company official filed an affidavit that said the restitution amount requested represents the cost of having other technicians rewrite computer code deleted by Anderson in addition to fielding customer complaints about the loss of service.
The official also wrote that the company lost customers as a result of Anderson’s actions.
Anderson started out at the company as an intern after obtaining an engineering degree from the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth.
He got his position through his stepfather, who is related to a Blueport executive, according to a sentencing memorandum filed by his lawyer.
Prosecutors requested a six-month prison term and six months of home confinement followed by a year of probation and restitution
A public defender for Anderson recommended one year or probation and restitution.
The case was investigated by the FBI, Foxboro police and the cyber crimes unit of the U.S. Attorney’s office.