A 21-year-old hacker, who engaged in blackmail by threatening to sell stolen information, has been sentenced to four years in prison, with one year suspended, by judges in Amsterdam.

Pepijn van der S was identified after one of his victims, a company that provided software to garages, reported the incident to the police. Van der S had attempted to market stolen data from the company, RDC, for the second time via an online platform known as RaidForums.

Previously, the hacker had successfully coerced RDC into paying him approximately €100,000 in bitcoin to prevent the dissemination of the pilfered information.

The job platform Homefun also yielded to Van der S's demands, paying him one bitcoin, which was valued at around €60,000 at the time. In this instance as well, he had promised to delete the information, but he failed to do so.

While at least 12 companies officially filed police complaints after being targeted by Van der S, the actual number is likely considerably higher, according to statements from the public prosecution department.

According to RTL Nieuws, Van der S was employed at the cybersecurity company Hadrian and also served as a volunteer for the Dutch Institute for Vulnerability Disclosure, where he aided companies in enhancing their defenses against hacking.

RaidForums has been subsequently shut down as a result of an international law enforcement operation. Photo by Santeri Viinamäki, Wikimedia commons.