An Atlanta man was ordered to pay $1.5 million in restitution for placing malicious code — commonly known as a “logic bomb” — on a U.S. Army computer that eventually cost taxpayers about $2.6 million, authorities said.
Mittesh Das, 49, was also sentenced to two years in prison on Sept. 11, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina said in a news release.
In November 2014, a computer program that handled pay and personnel matters for almost 200,000 Army reservists began having “unusual issues,” the release said. Five of the servers associated with the program are in Fort Bragg, N.C.
Suspicious code was found, prompting an investigation, the release said.
They found that in 2012, Das was subcontracted to lead the effort for a private company to manage the system for the Army, the release said.
In 2014, the contract was re-bid and awarded to another company, the release said. The change took place on Nov. 24, but Das inserted malicious code — commonly known as a “logic bomb” — in the days leading up to the changeover.
The code took effect the day after the changeover, and officials had to remove the malicious code, restore all information and review the entire system to find any further malicious code, the release said.
In all, the labor cost the Army about $2.6 million.
Das was indicted in April 2016 and was found guilty in September 2017.
After his 24 months in prison, he was also sentenced to three years of supervised release, the release said.
In other news:
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.