Manchester

Student hacked into computers to boost gamer status

A student who hacked into more than 100 computers has been given a suspended jail sentence.

Paul McLoughlin, 22, from Liverpool, tricked web users into downloading software which enabled him to access their personal information.

Police said he wanted to use other people's gaming accounts to improve his status as a gamer.

The Salford University student was given an eight month sentence suspended for 12 months at Southwark Crown Court.

McLoughlin, of Jericho Farm Close, Aigburth, was caught after someone in the United States who had their account hacked traced it back to the University of Salford.

The Metropolitan Police, who carried out the inquiry with the help of the university and internet security company McAfee, said McLoughlin had retrieved usernames and passwords of at least 100 victims, and accessed 20 individual accounts.

Det Insp Colin Wetherill, of the Police Central eCrime Unit, said: "A prosecution and conviction for this particular offence is rare."

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