A 23-year-old Frenchman has been handed a five month suspended jail sentence for hacking into President Barack Obama’s Twitter account. Francois Cousteix faced up to two years in jail for ‘breaking into a computer database’. He told the court he had been hoping to raise awareness of security flaws.
Outside the court, he said he was “relieved” to have escaped a jail sentence and would not appeal. Cousteix surfed the web at his home in the region of Auvergne in central France under the alias, ‘Hacker-Croll’. He was caught in March after FBI investigators alerted French cyber police.
Cousteix had found out the passwords of Twitter employees from personal information posted publicly and so was able to access famous people’s accounts, including that of President Obama and Britney Spears.
He said he didn’t consider himself a hacker – as he hadn’t destroyed anything.