Breach, Threat Management, Data Security, Incident Response, TDR

Countrywide insider gets eight months in prison for theft

A former employee of mortgage company Countrywide Financial was sentenced Tuesday to eight months in prison and ordered to pay $1.2 million in restitution after admitting to stealing and selling customers' personal data.

Rene Rebollo Jr. of Pasadena, Calif. was also sentenced by U.S. District Judge Christina Snyder in Los Angeles to serve an additional 10 months in a community jail. Rebollo, who formerly worked as a senior analyst at Countrywide, was charged in 2008 with exceeding authorized access to the company's data, orchestrating a scam to steal customer information and selling it to loan officers from other companies.

Rebollo had initially pleaded innocent but changed his plea in January..

Another defendant, Wahid Siddiqi of Thousand Oaks, Calif. was previously sentenced to 36 months in prison for selling the information that Rebollo provided.

Authorities said the men downloaded the personal data of 20,000 customers once a week for two years, then sold the identity batches for $500 a piece.

The breach pinned millions of Countrywide customers against the mortgage company, spawning some 35 lawsuits, including a class-action complaint. Countrywide representatives , however, have denied that anyone fell victim to fraud.

Bank of America, which now owns Countrywide, settled the suits last year by agreeing to provide free credit monitoring for up to 17 million people whose personal data was exposed.

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