Hacking of computer devices: start of the testimony of the victims at the trial of the “star spy”

The first alleged victims of web spy Pascal Desgagnés testified Thursday, stressing the stress caused to them by the theft of their personal data in addition to private photos and videos.

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The first plaintiff, a medical professional in her mid-twenties, took no detour to describe the fear that has plagued her for the past few years. Recall that Pascal Desgagnés, a computer scientist, is accused of having illegally obtained personal data from the devices of several public figures and other people who are not known.

“Knowing that someone had my address when I was living alone in an apartment, I was very fearful,” said the young woman who had all of her personal data stolen, ranging from her address and their passwords to a photo of their passport.

She described to Judge Rachel Gagnon the feeling of vertigo she felt when the investigators presented her with the file in her name found on the accused’s computer.

“I was very struck by the sheet which contained all my information. I said to myself at that time: ” Something can happen to me ”, said the young woman who answered with confidence the questions of the crown prosecutor Michel Green.

To each of the photos submitted, the complainant described the image, consistently adding that “it was private.”

great stress

Copy and paste for the other two testimonies heard Thursday morning. Two other young women in their twenties, contacted by police in the fall of 2018 to inform them of an identity theft.

At the first meeting with the investigators, the shock.

Social network identifiers, passwords, photos and videos never shared, exchanging text messages or emails with relatives, their lives were in the files seized from the spy’s computer.

“There is really a stress that came to me. We trust, we put our things in our cellphones so as not to leave it lying around on papers. […] Knowing that someone had access to all my things, I’m really not comfortable, ”said the second complainant, recalling that we all put sensitive information in our cell phones. “We can use the calendar to tell where we are, at what time. It’s very confidential.”

Stress and fear were also the conclusions of the testimony of the third alleged victim. “It was a lot of anxiety,” she admitted to the judge.

The entourage also impacted

And the consequences were not only felt for these young women. Their loved ones were also impacted, recalled the young health professional who launched the ball of testimonies Thursday morning.

“There is also the fact that it did not just affect me, but also many of my relatives and friends,” she said.

Photos of some of her friends in swimsuits were in the recovered files. A photo of her and her father, taken as part of a consultation at her work as well.

The second witness explained to the court that information on a former employer was in her phone and therefore, in the iCloud that was stolen from her. It included the code of the alarm system of the place or procedures to accomplish certain tasks. Her spouse’s credit card number was also found in the files.

Testimony is due to continue Thursday afternoon.

More than 500 other names mentioned

On the other hand, as revealed by Radio-Canada on Wednesday, traces of files identified in the name of more than 500 other people were discovered in Desgagnés’ computers.

Among these, well-known names such as players and former Canadiens like Carey Price, Brendan Gallagher, Philip Danault and Josh Gorges, personalities from the entertainment world like Charlotte Cardin, Louis-José Houde and Maripier Morin or influencers , including former participants of‘Double occupation Trudy Simoneau and Jessika Dénommée.

However, these files had been deleted and it is a list recovered by the investigator in the file which made it possible to establish their existence, without however making it possible to affirm that personal data have already been attached to them.

This is why the identity of these 500 additional people is not protected by the publication ban, since they are not considered victims.

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