British cyber expert to be sentenced for creating malware

A British cybersecurity expert credited with stopping a worldwide computer virus in 2017 is about to learn his sentence for creating malware designed to steal banking information.

Marcus Hutchins appears in federal court in Milwaukee on Friday. He pleaded guilty in May to conspiring to distribute malware called Kronos from 2012 to 2015. Prosecutors dismissed eight charges in exchange for his plea.

He faces up 10 years in prison but could receive a more lenient sentence for accepting responsibility. Prosecutors aren’t making a sentencing recommendation but say in a filing ahead of the hearing Friday that it “should be sufficient, though not greater than necessary.”

Hutchins’ arrest in Las Vegas in 2017 came as a shock. Just months earlier he was hailed as a hero for finding a “kill switch” to the WannaCry virus that crippled computers worldwide.

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