SAN JOSE (CBS SF) — A 41-year-old San Jose man pleaded guilty Wednesday to a hacking attack that disabled the computerized concession sales system at the San Jose Earthquakes Avaya Stadium.
Salvatore A. La Rosa, who is a former employee of Spectra, the concessions contractor for the stadium, faces up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $25,000 in May.READ MORE: High School Girl Sues San Mateo County, State of California to Allow Indoor Youth Sports
Under an agreement with prosecutors, La Rosa pleaded guilty to the sole count of intentional damage to a protected computer. He remains out of custody on bond.
La Rosa admitted in his guilty plea to intentionally accessing Spectra Food Services and Hospitality’s on-line concessions management account without permission during the pro soccer team’s home opener on February 29, 2020.READ MORE: Longtime San Francisco Merchants Lament Recent Spike in Burglaries
He logged into the administrative port from his residence and used a password, without authority, to access Spectra’s concession menu and payment selections. During his unauthorized access, he intentionally deleted menu and payment selections, causing all of the point-of-sale tablets used to stop working.
The Spectra’s staff working the home opener had to resort to handwriting orders and using calculators to complete cash transactions. In some instances, Spectra had to provide free food and beverages to club members because of its inability to process credit card transactions.
According to the charging document, Spectra suffered a loss of over $268,000 in damages consisting of lost revenue, concession discounts offered at a future game, employee time to repair the damage to the data and labor costs.MORE NEWS: Fed Judge in SF Approves $650 Million Facebook Privacy Lawsuit Settlement
“Insider threats can be incredibly damaging to companies, their data, and intellectual property even after an individual is no longer employed by the company,” said FBI San Francisco Special Agent in Charge Craig Fair.