According to an article by the Wall Street Journal, a 21-year-old man admitted that he used a data center in East Wenatchee to hack T-Mobile, which ultimately resulted in the exposure of sensitive information of more than 50 million people.
T-Mobile was notified of the data breach on Aug. 13. John Binns, an American living in Turkey, was identified as the suspect by Alon Gal, co-founder of Hudson Rock, a cybercrime intelligence firm.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Binns was access T-Mobile through an unprotected router in July. Binns managed to hack into the servers at the East Wenatchee data center. The East Wenatchee access point granted him entry to over 100 of the company’s servers.
"We did it to harm US infrastructure," Binns allegedly told Gal at the time.
The Wall Street Journal reports that it took Binns one week to crack into the servers and by Aug. 4, he had stolen millions of files.
According to T-Mobile’s security firm, their data was reportedly being marketed on the dark web.
Binns asserted that the attack was prompted by his disdain over poor treatment he received from US law enforcement.
The Wall Street Journal’s article states that Binns filed a lawsuit against the FBI, CIA, and the Justice Department in November 2020. Binns alleges that he was kidnapped in Germany and Turkey, and was unfairly placed in a mental institution against his will by US law enforcement agencies. Also in the lawsuit, Binns alleges he had been tortured and spied on for being a suspected member of the Islamic State militant group; he denied being affiliated with that group.