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Prison officials: Idaho inmates hacked JPay tablet system

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Idaho prison officials say 364 inmates hacked the JPay tablets they use for email, music and games and collectively transferred nearly a quarter million dollars into their own accounts.
 
Idaho Department of Correction Spokesman Jeff Ray says the department's special investigations unit discovered the problem earlier this month, and the improper conduct involved no taxpayer dollars.
 
The handheld computer tablets are popular in prisons across the country, and are made available to Idaho inmates through a contract with CenturyLink and JPay. Neither company immediately responded to a request for comment from The Associated Press.
 
The tablets allow inmates to email their families and friends, purchase and listen to music or play simple electronic games.
 
Ray said in a prepared statement that the inmates were "intentionally exploiting a vulnerability within JPay to improperly increase their JPay account balances." He said 50 inmates credited their accounts in amounts exceeding $1,000; the largest amount credited by a single inmate was just under $10,000.
 
The total amount was nearly $225,000.


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