Operator of ‘revenge porn’ website pleads guilty to multiple charges

19 Feb 2015

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Twenty-eight-year-old Hunter Moore, operator of one of the most notorious revenge porn sites on the internet, has pleaded guilty in a US court to charges of identity theft and hacking, both direct and in-direct.

The site, and its many copycats, had spawned a trend where people, mostly men, would post images of their partners online without their permission in order to seek revenge for something they felt was wrongfully done to them, commonly known as revenge porn.

The site proved popular with internet users with Ars Technica reporting that at its peak, Moore was making significant amounts of money, with estimates put somewhere in the region of US$10,000 per month from advertising revenue by receiving 30m page views.

Obtaining a PDF of the court documents, Ars Technica were also able to show that Moore orchestrated a hacking-for-hire ring by hiring hackers including a man called Charles Evens who Moore paid US$200 a week to hack into women’s’ phone and post nude images.

Moore also created dozens of fake social media accounts posing as friends of his targets where he would then gain access to their personal files which the court document described Moore’s activities as attempting to “help populate the site with nude photos, defendant aided, abetted, and procured, and wilfully caused co-defendant Charles Evens (“Evens”) to intentionally access, without authorisation, a computer used in interstate commerce belonging to Google by accessing the victims’ e-mail accounts.”

Moore’s next appearance in court is expected on 25 February in California but this could be pushed out to some time in March, according to a spokesperson for the state’s attorney’s office.

Guys at computer screen image via Shutterstock

Colm Gorey is a journalist with Siliconrepublic.com

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