A 23 year-old Frenchman accused of infiltrating Twitter systems and distributing corporate data has claimed that his actions were not malicious.
François 'Hacker Croll' Cousteix told French media that he was trying to highlight vulnerabilities in the micro-blogging service when he allegedly stole more than 300 pages of corporate information.
"I wanted to warn them, to show up the faults in the system," he was quoted as saying.
Cousteix, who is currently unemployed, has been charged by local authorities with breaking into a data system. If convicted, he could face up to two years in jail and a €30,000 (£27,000) fine.
Authorities believe that, while posing online as 'Hacker Croll', Cousteix was able to penetrate systems at Twitter headquarters in spring 2009, and access hundreds of confidential corporate documents and administration tools.
Twitter has maintained that no user credentials were breached, and that the attack had no impact on the micro-blogging service.
However, many of the stolen documents were released to the press last summer, including information on Twitter's security systems, notes from confidential meetings and some of the company's future plans.
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