Admitted Countrywide data thief gets 8 months in prison (updated)

In a breach case that was first revealed in August 2008, a former Countrywide employee has been sentenced:

A former employee of mortgage lender Countrywide Financial Corp. was sentenced Tuesday to eight months in prison and ordered to repay $1.2 million after pleading guilty to downloading millions of borrower files on thumb drives and selling the information to other loan officers.

Assistant U.S. Atty. Angela Davis had recommended a sentence of 30 months in prison for Rene L. Rebollo Jr. of Pasadena, who had worked as a senior analyst at Countrywide’s subprime unit, Full Spectrum Lending. In January Rebollo changed his plea from not guilty to guilty.


The case, which identity theft experts said was the biggest reported data theft that they could recall by a financial insider, led to more than 30 lawsuits, including nationwide class actions.

Bank of America settled the suits in August 2010 by agreeing to provide free credit monitoring, identity theft insurance and reimbursement for losses to as many as 17 million consumers who had dealt with Countrywide. (see previous coverage – Dissent)

There was no evidence that the 2.5 million borrowers whose personal data were stolen had suffered financial harm as a result, Davis said. The government had listed Countrywide as the victim of the crime but not the borrowers.

Read more on the Los Angeles Times.  For additional previous coverage on this case, you can search for “Countrywide” and this blog for “Countrywide” and “Rebollo.”

It would be nice to know what the final total cost of this breach was to Countrywide/BofA.

Update: The FBI press release had some data on costs:

As a result of the data breach, Countrywide underwent considerable expenses, including notification of individuals whose information was improperly disclosed, at a cost of approximately $1.2 million, and providing free credit monitoring for those individuals at a cost of approximately $15.75 million. Countrywide has also estimated that it has expended approximately $13.4 million in civil litigation, including several class action lawsuits, arising from the data breach.

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