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Founder of energy-focused networking website indicted over alleged hacking of competitor database

Networkingwebsite Oilpro founder David Kent was indicted for allegedly hacking into and stealingfrom the database of a competitor's website, according to the U.S. Department ofJustice.

The competitorwebsite, which was not named in the DOJ's March 30 news release, was mentioned tohave been founded and sold by Kent in 2000 and 2010, respectively. A Reuters reportpublished the same day noted that although the complaint did not identifythe company Rigzone by name, DHI Group Chief Executive Michael Durney, in a statement,confirmed that his company was "in complete cooperation with law enforcementofficials on this investigation."

Kentwas charged with one count of conspiracy to commit computer hacking and wire fraud,and one count of wire fraud for stealing information from over 700,000 customeraccounts, inviting Rigzone's members to join Oilpro, and attempting to sell Oilproto DHI.

"[I]nsteadof relinquishing control of his former company, subject David Kent [allegedly] continuedto illegally access data and information from his former business to help benefita competing business he formed after the sale," FBI Assistant Director-in-ChargeDiego Rodriquez said.

The U.S.attorney of the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara said that the investigationon the case is ongoing.