Former NYC hospital employee pleads guilty to hacking coworkers' emails

An IT professional at a New York City-based hospital pleaded guilty Dec. 20 to one count of computer fraud, according to a news release from the Department of Justice.

Richard Liriano admitted to using malicious software programs to hack into hospital computers and coworkers' email accounts between 2013 and 2018. By misusing his administrative accesses, Mr. Liriano would log into employee accounts and copy coworkers' personal documents, including tax records and photographs.

To access fellow employees' email accounts, Mr. Liriano used malicious programs, such as "keylogger," to steal usernames and passwords. Investigators determined that Mr. Liriano stole the usernames and passwords for around 70 email accounts.

The hospital, which was not disclosed, suffered from $350,000 in losses due to Mr. Liriano.

"To feed his voyeuristic curiosity, Richard Liriano, an information technology professional at a New York hospital, installed a 'keylogger' on dozens of his coworkers' computers and used other unauthorized software to spy on and steal personal information from them," said U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman. "Liriano's disturbing crimes not only invaded the privacy of his coworkers; he also intruded into computers housing vital healthcare and patient information, costing his former employer hundreds of thousands of dollars to remediate. He will now be held accountable for his actions."

Mr. Liriano's sentencing hearing is scheduled for April 15.

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