Former U.S. Transportation Security Agency data analyst, Douglas Duchak, has been accused of trying to sabotage a terrorist database one week after losing his job. The database stores updated information from the government’s terrorist watch-list and criminal histories. Also, the database is used to examine people with access to sensitive information and secure data.
The attack was designed to cause damage intentionally by disrupting data on servers. Planting malicious code into a TSA secured computer in October, it allowed damage to the database without access to a protected computer. The type of coding is called a logic bomb. The code was caught by other workers before any damage to the system was done.
Duchak worked as a TSA contractor for five years.He is charged with two counts of attempting to cause damage to a protected computer with a maximum sentence of ten years and a $250,000 fine for each count.
According to Wired.com. Duchak plead not guilty. His attorney said the systems he is accused of attacking were beta systems used for testing. “It wasn’t connected to anything that had to do with security,” David Lindsey, Duchak’s attorney said. “Before anything he had his hands on left, it went to another system before it got into any live system that did screening. As I understand it, it is a system that does statistical analyses on the systems that are up and running. And when the tests are run, those are done at one level and then [go to] a second level and then at a final level before the analyses are verified and passed onto anything you would call a live system.”