Israeli arrested for hacking Madonna's computer, leaking new songs

The months-long international investigation, conducted between the FBI and Lahav 433, the police's special investigation unit, led investigators to a 39-year-old Tel Aviv resident.

January 21, 2015 13:41
1 minute read.

Hacking into Madonna's computer (illustrative). (photo credit: INGIMAGE,REUTERS,JPOST STAFF)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Madonna has been “Hung Up” on Israel for a long time, but she might not want to “Open Her Heart” to the country any more following Wednesday’s news of being hacked by an Israeli.

The Israel Police special investigation unit Lahav 433 arrested a 38-year-old Tel Aviv resident on suspicion of hacking the computers of several musical artists, including Madonna, and stealing unreleased music to sell online.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

In December, a slew of demos from Madonna’s album-in-progress, Rebel Heart, leaked online, forcing the superstar to release six tracks and move up the release date of the full album, which was due to come out in March.

Despite her best efforts, Madonna could not keep the hackers “Frozen” out, but releasing the album for pre-order as an “early Christmas present” to her fans worked out well. It went to the top of the iTunes charts in 43 countries.

Madonna will likely view news of progress in the case as a welcome “Ray of Light”; she had previously called the leaks of her unfinished music as akin to artistic “rape” and terrorism.

“I have been violated as a human and an artist!” she wrote on Instagram.

The police, who worked with the FBI in investigating the leaks, searched the suspect’s home, seizing computers, accessories and other media. They are charging him with computer trespassing, fraud and intellectual property offenses. (Even for a “Material Girl,” intellectual property is important.) The star is set to perform at this year’s Grammy awards, and possibly at the Brit awards as well. Madonna, who practices Kabbala, opened her last world tour in Tel Aviv in 2012, after closing her previous tour here as well.

In related news, Icelandic artist Björk released her new album two months early this week after the album was leaked online.

Michelle Malka Grossman contributed to this report.

Related Content

August 15, 2018
Deja vu: Will the Flug farce be repeated?