A hacker sent to prison for stealing and selling Ed Sheeran songs for cryptocurrency

According to the BBC, Adrian Kwiatkowski, an English hacker from Ipswich who stole two unreleased songs by Ed Sheeran, has been given an 18-month prison term. Kwiatkowski exchanged Sheeran’s songs for bitcoin for £131,000 (US$148,000), along with 12 other songs by the American rapper Lil Uzi Vert, on the dark web. Kwiatkowski allegedly obtained the unreleased music by breaking into their cloud-based accounts, according to UK prosecutors. He stole from a lot more artists because 1,263 unpublished tracks were discovered in his hands by investigators, albeit they didn’t specify whose cloud services those were.

When many musicians told the New York District Attorney’s office that someone using the alias Spirdark had hacked their accounts and was selling their work online, American authorities opened an inquiry. Kwiatkowski was subsequently connected by investigators to the email address Spirdark used with the case’s cryptocurrency account. Furthermore, an IP address associated with one of the compromised devices was connected to his UK address.

London police discovered seven devices with 1,263 unreleased tracks by 89 different musicians when they apprehended him. His hard disc included further incriminating files, including one in which he described how he broke into the victims’ accounts. Additionally, they discovered his Bitcoins, which he acknowledged getting in exchange for the tunes. He admitted guilt to a total of 19 offences, which included copyright infringement and possession of illegal property. This sentenced him to an 18-month prison term.

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