Inmates in an Idaho prison have successfully hacked the software of prison-issued tablets to gain nearly quarter of a million dollars in credits on devices, the Associated Press reports.
Some 364 prison inmates were involved in the scheme wherein inmates used prison tablets to steal money which they then siphoned to their own accounts. The targeted tablets were JPay tablets commonly found in the prison system across the United States. They are used by prison inmates to access emails, music and games among other basic computing necessities.
According to the Associated Press report, prison officials discovered 364 inmates had leveraged a software vulnerability to increase their balances within their Pay account.
Of the 364 inmates, 50 were Abel to use themselves credits for more than $1,000. One inmate was able to exploit the flaw to issue a self-credit of nearly $10,000.
Pointedly, the company recovered nearly a quarter of the total siphoned amount and has since suspended some functions for inmates until they reimburse the stolen credits on their own.
In a prepared statement, Idaho Department of Correction spokesman Jeff Ray said the inmates were “intentionally exploiting a vulnerability within JPay to improperly increase their Pay account balances.”
“This conduct was intentional, not accidental. It required a knowledge of the JPay system and multiple actions by every inmate who exploited the system’s vulnerability to improper credit their account.
Inmates at the Idaho State Correctional Institution, Idaho State Correctional Center, Idaho Correctional Institution-Orofino, South Idaho Correctional Institution and the Correctional Alternative Placement Plan facility operated by private prison company MTC Inc, are involved in the incident.
For now, inmates will be able to send or receive emails but will no longer be able to download music or games on the tablets.
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