Matthew Keys Sentenced to 2 Years in LA Times-Anonymous Hacking Case

The former Reuters journalist was found guilty last year and had faced up to 25 years in prison

Last Updated: April 14, 2016 @ 9:33 AM

Matthew Keys was sentenced to two years in prison over the Los Angeles Times-Anonymous hacking case on Wednesday.

The former Reuters journalist was found guilty last October on three felony counts of computer fraud in U.S. District Court in Sacramento, California, and had faced up to 25 years behind bars.

Following his sentence, Keys will be on supervised release. He is set to surrender on June 15.

Keys, now 29, was a deputy social media editor at Thomson Reuters at the time of the 2010 hacking.

He was indicted in 2013 after allegedly giving hacktivist group Anonymous vital login data for systems at his then-employer, Tribune Company. The information allowed the group to gain access to the web publishing platform of the Times, a Tribune publication.

The hack, which occurred over two days in December 2010, resulted in the altering of an L.A. Times post on House Democrats to read in part, “Pressure Builds in House to Elect CHIPPY 1337.”

After leaving Tribune, Keys held a similar social-media job at Reuters; he was fired from that job after his indictment.

In a essay posted on Medium earlier on Wednesday, Keys continued to profess his innocence.

“I am innocent, and I did not ask for this fight. Nonetheless, I hope that our combined efforts help bring about positive change to rules and regulations that govern our online conduct,” he wrote. “As I’ve previously wrote about, nobody should face terrorism charges for passing a Netflix username and password. But under today’s law, prosecutors can use their discretion to bring those exact charges against people — including journalists –whenever they see fit.

“Prosecutors did so in this case. Until the law catches up with the times, there’s no doubt that prosecutors will do it again,” Keys predicted.