Kretsinger, Sony hacker Recursion, jailed for year

image captionThe Lulzsec hacking group used this distinctive character as its mascot

A 25-year-old man known online as Recursion has been sentenced to a year in jail for hacking Sony Pictures Entertainment.

Cody Kretsinger pleaded guilty last April, and admitted being part of an infamous hacking group known as Lulzsec.

After his jail term, Kretsinger will be required to do 1,000 hours of community service, a Los Angeles judge ruled.

Sony said the hack caused more than $600,000 (£392,000) in damage.

Not to be confused with the attack on Sony's PlayStation Network, the Sony Pictures hack in July 2011 involved breaching the company's website and accessing a database of customers' names, addresses, phone numbers and email addresses.

Around 50,000 of the names were later posted online.

Kretsinger pleaded guilty to counts of conspiracy and unauthorised impairment of a protected computer.

Prosecutors declined to say if Kretsinger was also co-operating with authorities in exchange for leniency.

Lulzsec in the dock

It follows guilty pleas last week from other hackers involved with Lulzsec.

image captionRyan Ackroyd pleaded guilty at Southwark Crown Court last week to hacking

At Southwark Crown Court in London, 26-year-old Ryan Ackroyd, from South Yorkshire, admitted to being part of the group that targeted the NHS and the UK's Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca).

He is to be sentenced next month with three others: Mustafa Al-Bassam, 18, from Peckham, south London, Jake Davis, 20, from Lerwick, Shetland, and Ryan Cleary, 21, of Essex.

Kretsinger's guilty plea came a month after it was revealed that another prolific hacker, known as Sabu - real name Hector Xavier Monsegur - had been co-operating with US authorities to provide information on people suspected of being part of Lulzsec.

Murdoch and CIA targeted

The group emerged as a splinter group of the Anonymous hacking collective in May 2011.

The name stood for Lulz Security - in which "Lulz" is derived from the popular internet term "lol", meaning "laugh out loud".

Members employed techniques to flood websites with high traffic - known as distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks - in order to render them unusable.

Lulzsec claimed to have attacked the Sun newspaper's website, on which a false story was planted suggesting that Rupert Murdoch, CEO of its News Corporation parent company, had died.

In the US, the group was credited with attacking the website of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

Lulzsec had previously posted a story on American broadcaster PBS's website, suggesting that the dead rapper Tupac Shakur was alive.

More on this story