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updated: 7/17/2013 3:41 PM

Elmhurst man pleads guilty to Federal Reserve theft

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An Elmhurst resident faces up to a year in prison and a $100,000 fine after pleading guilty to stealing confidential computer files from the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago on his last day of employment.

Brian McCarthy, 31, of Elmhurst entered a guilty plea Wednesday to federal misdemeanor and admitted to downloading 71 proprietary computer files belonging to the bank on Oct. 5, 2011.

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McCarthy was a senior credit analyst with the bank from 2009 to 2010. He was a supervisor of seven employees at the time the theft occurred.

In his plea, McCarthy acknowledged he signed a confidentiality agreement with the bank to leave all bank computer files behind when his employment ended. An investigation revealed he downloaded the files to his personal thumbdrive and attempted to email several files to his personal email account in an attempt to circumvent the bank's security.

The files were related to the bank's ability to assess and monitor its credit risk exposure. There is also evidence McCarthy searched the Internet for techniques on declassifying the files.

In addition to the possible prison time and fine, McCarthy agreed to pay $26,400 in restitution to the bank for costs incurred to determine how much information he attempted to steal.

With his guilty plea, McCarthy is barred from participating directly or indirectly in the affairs of any financial institution insured by the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund or the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. without written prior consent. He will be sentenced in federal court Oct. 10.

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