Kosovo citizen Ardit Ferizi, 20, AKA "Th3Dir3ctorY," made his first appearance before a judge in the Eastern District of Virginia Wednesday after being arrested in Malaysia in October for hacking, identity theft, and providing material support to a terrorist organization.
It is the first true cyber-terror case being tried. If convicted, Ferizi faces a sentence of up to 35 years in prison.
The criminal complaint states that Ferizi passed stolen data to members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, more commonly known as ISIS) on two separate occasions -- once to Tariq Hamayun, AKA Abu Muslim Al-Britani, and once to Junaid Hussain, AKA Abu Hussain Al-Britani, a "British hacker and well-known member of ISIL," according to DoJ.
The charges state Ferizi compromised an unnamed victim organization, stealing data on roughly 100,000 individuals -- including names, email addresses, email passwords, physical locations, and phone numbers for approximately 1,350 U.S. government and military personnel. Ferizi sent the files to himself via Facebook, then passed it to Hussain. Hussain then took the identity and location data of the government personnel on Twitter with a message with the intent of "encouraging terrorist attacks against the affected individuals." The earlier attack appeared to be for stealing PII and credit card data.