Investigators with the Utah County Attorney’s Office filed charges on Friday against seven men who reportedly used a computer glitch to undermine a Lindon company and steal clients for a competing business.
Eric Oldson, 44, of Orem; Jason Marsh, 43, of Mapleton; John Priday, 40, of Lehi; Michael Perley, 36, of Lehi; Spencer Oldson, 37, of Provo; Tyler Fredrickson, 35, of Springville; and Jeffrey Johns, 41, of Henderson, Nevada were all charged with a first-degree felony of unlawful activity and a second-degree felony of computer crime.
At some point in November 2015, a computer glitch disabled the company website for Vox, a Lindon-based marketing company.
“The company requires that each employee accessing the system has a unique user name and password. That system allows the company the ability to regulate what each employee can access,” charges state. “At some point the code requiring a name and password for that page was disabled without Vox’s knowledge.”
The men aforementioned were all employees of a company competing with Vox, police reported. After discovering the glitch, the men reportedly shared access with each other and found private information from Vox like pricing, customer item numbers, plans, tendencies, preferences and recommendations.
Using the stolen information, the men reportedly contacted Vox’s customers without solicitation and underbid Vox, sometimes by only a few cents, according to charges.
“This continued through August 12, 2016 when a customer informed Vox there may be a problem,” court documents state. “Vox discovered the error in the code and repaired the security glitch that allowed the defendant access to the victim company’s proprietary information.”
Police reported the men’s actions cost the company more than $5,000 in revenue. Court records show none of the men have any prior criminal history.