Reuters Employee Facing Hacking Charges Suspended

Philip Bump

Matthew Keys, the journalist indicted for allegedly helping hackers from Anonymous access the website of the Los Angeles Times, has been suspended by Thomson Reuters, but he's back on Twitter.

RELATED: The Matthew Keys Case Shows Just How Big a Bully the Feds Can Be

Gerry Smith of the Huffington Post reports that Thomson Reuters confirmed Keys' suspension earlier today. The suspension went into effect last night, not long after the story broke.

RELATED: Reuters Social Media Editor Matthew Keys Indicted for Helping Anonymous Hackers

The first indicators that Reuters was taking disciplinary action against Keys may have come, oddly enough, from Reuters reporters covering the story. The most recent article by Reuters' Dan Levine doesn't mention that detail but a version posted shortly after midnight — and now offline — did, as revealed in Google's cache and the mobile version of the story:

True to form, Keys returned to social media soon after the news broke. The first tweet he shared was this one, which he retweeted.

Deputy Reuters editor indicted for conspiring with hacker group Anonymous, Justice Department announces - @politico

— Breaking News (@BreakingNews) March 14, 2013

Shortly afterward, he tweeted this.

I am fine. I found out the same way most of you did: From Twitter. Tonight I'm going to take a break. Tomorrow, business as usual.

— Matthew Keys (@TheMatthewKeys) March 14, 2013

It wasn't clear, at first, what "I found out" was meant to refer to. As New York magazine noted, Keys certainly knew an investigation was underway.

[I]t seems the prolific tweeter has known that he was under investigation for at least several months. FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller has confirmed to Daily Intelligencer that the agency executed a search warrant on Keys's home in Secaucus, New Jersey in early October 2012.

Eimiller said evidence related to the case was seized during the search, although she could not comment on the specific items recovered.

Keys confirmed that he knew an investigation was underway in a tweet this morning.

Good morning. Still fine. To clarify this tweet from yesterday, I found out about the *indictment* from Twitter -

— Matthew Keys (@TheMatthewKeys) March 15, 2013

However, as noted by Gizmodo, Keys indicated in a chat with a friend on Wednesday that he suspected something would shortly happen. "I don't even know if I have much longer here," he apparently wrote. "Think my days are number[ed]." His friend suggested he not be paranoid. Keys responded, "I'm not being paranoid."

Top image from a video by Amanda Fiscina via Vimeo.