In today's press release, the DoJ claimed Keys, an ex-web producer for a Tribune Company-owned news station, conspired with a hacker associated with Anonymous to successfully hack into the LA Times website to alter a Dec. 10 news feature.
According to the LA Times blog, the news organization believes the hacked article was one titled "Pressure builds in House to elect CHIPPY 1337;" Chippy 1337 is an Anonymous hacktivist group. According to the blog post, the only things altered were the title, lede and name of the author to "CHIPPYS NO 1 FAN."
Matthew Keys has been accused of providing the log-in credentials for the Tribune news company to the hacker responsible, who went by the screen name "sharpie."
It appears the probable cause for indicting Keys, who is supposedly "AESCracked" in the online communications, rests solely on the online conversation that was investigated and possibly recorded by the Sacramento and Los Angeles Field Offices of the FBI.
[See the slideshow for screenshots of the conversation, Keys's Tweet about the indictment and the article in question.]
According to Keys's Tweet, he found out about the indictment today on Twitter, not the DoJ:
"I am fine. I found out the same way most of you did: From Twitter. Tonight I'm going to take a break. Tomorrow, business as usual."
The three charges the DoJ admits are "merely accusations," subject to a trial, include: conspiracy to transmit information to damage a protected computer, transmitting information to damage a protected computer and attempted transmission of information to damage a protected computer.
The arraignment is scheduled to take place on April 12 in Sacramento.