Hacker Pleads Guilty to Stealing Personal Data from City of Newnan and Medical Clinic Servers

2 min read

Robert Purbeck, also known as “Lifelock” and “Studmaster,” pleaded guilty today to federal charges of computer fraud and abuse after hacking into the computer servers of the City of Newnan and a Griffin medical clinic, as well as targeting at least 17 other victims across the United States. This resulted in the theft of personal information from over 132,000 individuals.

“Purbeck breached computer systems in our district and across the country, stole vast amounts of personal information, and aggravated his crimes by weaponizing sensitive data in an egregious attempt to extort his victims,” said U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Buchanan. “Cyber-attacks on health care facilities and local governments pose a grave risk to the security of personal information.  Our office is committed to tirelessly coordinating with our law enforcement partners to help safeguard the sensitive information of citizens by combatting cybercrime threats from within and outside this district.”

“FBI Atlanta continues to be unrelenting in bringing cybercriminals to justice and determined to defeat and disrupt campaigns targeting critical infrastructure,” said FBI Atlanta Special Agent in Charge Keri Farley. “Helping victims of crime is the FBI’s highest priority. The FBI will continue to aggressively pursue these criminal actors wherever they attempt to hide and ensure they are held accountable under the law.”

According to court documents, Purbeck purchased access to a Griffin, Georgia medical clinic’s computer server on a darknet marketplace in June 2017. He then used stolen credentials to gain unauthorized access and stole medical records containing sensitive personal information of over 43,000 individuals. In February 2018, he similarly purchased access to a City of Newnan Police Department server and stole records with personal information from over 14,000 people.

In August 2019, FBI agents executed a search warrant on Purbeck’s home in Meridian, Idaho, seizing multiple computers and devices containing personal information from various data breaches. As part of his plea agreement, Purbeck agreed to pay over $1 million in restitution to the victims.

Purbeck, 44, of Meridian, Idaho, is scheduled for sentencing on June 18, 2024, before Chief U.S. District Judge Timothy C. Batten Sr. in the United States Courthouse in Newnan, Georgia.

The case is being investigated by the FBI Atlanta Field Office, with assistance from the FBI Boise, Idaho Resident Agency.