GREGORY TOMLINSON, a computer software engineer,Has been Indicted in connection with his unauthorized access and duplication of certain computer software files owned by his employer, AOL, Inc.

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the indictment of GREGORY TOMLINSON, a computer software engineer, in connection with his unauthorized access and duplication of certain computer software files owned by his employer, AOL, Inc.[1] TOMLINSON has been charged in a 35-count indictment with Grand Larceny, Unlawful Duplication of Computer Related Materials, Computer Tampering, and Computer Trespass.

“Computer trespass and commercial espionage are a billion-dollar international problem,” said District Attorney Vance. “Oftentimes, hackers and other internal employees access sensitive material for unlawful and inappropriate purposes. I commend our new Cybercrime and Identity Theft Bureau for acting swiftly to contain the threat and seize the computer evidence. Attempts to steal or hack computer data will be aggressively prosecuted by this office.”

According to documents filed in court, TOMLINSON was a software engineer employed by AOL. On October 26, 2009, he gave approximately two-weeks notice of his intent to quit his job with AOL; his resignation was to be effective on November 6, 2009. On November 2, 2009, TOMLINSON accessed proprietary computer code owned by AOL without permission or authority to do so. Internal security systems at AOL were tripped by TOMLINSON and alerted when he accessed the software code in question, and access logs tracked his actions within the company’s network. AOL records reveal that TOMLINSON made repeated unauthorized modifications to an AOL Website under development, which subsequently allowed him to access, view, and duplicate at least seven computer files containing proprietary software code used by AOL to publish and support Website content.

According to court documents, a search warrant executed at TOMLINSON's residence in Brooklyn at the time of his arrest on March 10, 2010, resulted in the recovery of computer equipment and copies of the proprietary computer code on a USB-flash drive.

Assistant District Attorney Jeremy Glickman, Deputy Chief of the Cybercrime and Identity Theft Bureau, is handling the prosecution under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney David Szuchman, Chief of the Cybercrime and Identity Theft Bureau.

District Attorney Vance thanked the New York City Police Department, Computer Crime Squad, specifically Lieutenant Dennis Lane, Detective Dennis Dragos, and Detective Richard Macnamara for assisting in the investigation. District Attorney Vance also thanked representatives of AOL, Inc., for their assistance and cooperation in this investigation.

Defendant Information:

GREGORY TOMLINSON, 4/1/1980
200 Schermerhorn Street
Brooklyn, NY

Charges:

* Grand Larceny in the Fourth Degree, seven counts, class E felony
* Unlawful Duplication of Computer Related Materials, seven counts, class E felony
* Computer Tampering in the Third Degree, seven counts, class E felony
* Computer Trespass, fourteen counts, class E felony

A class E felony is punishable by 1 1/3 to 4 years in prison.

[1] The charges contained in the indictments are merely allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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