Updated 04:23 AM EDT, Tue, Sep 22, 2020

FBI Probing St. Louis Cardinals for Suspected Hacking Into Houston Astros' Database

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An FBI investigation is under way for allegations that the St. Louis Cardinals hacked into the database of the Houston Astros to steal information about the team.

ESPN reported that a statement from the MLB, Cardinals and Astros revealed that all of them are fully cooperating with the ongoing investigation. The probe started last year after vital information illegally taken from the Astros' servers were posted online.

According to the New York Times, there is evidence that employees of the Cardinals broke into the Astros database and stole information on "internal discussions about trades, proprietary statistics and scouting reports."

The same report added that there were no information on the identities of the employees or if the higher officials knew about the offense.

"Major League Baseball has been aware of and has fully cooperated with the federal investigation into the illegal breach of the Astros' baseball operations database. Once the investigative process has been completed by federal law enforcement officials, we will evaluate the next steps and will make decisions promptly," MLB said in a statement.

Cardinals manager Mike Matheny reportedly admitted that "something is going on" but noted that they will not react until they get hold of all important information.

On the other hand, baseball commissioner Rob Manfred said that the league will not arrive at a judgment until there are additional information on the investigation.

"I think until we know, this is different from when we might investigate, for example, a drug case where we're one of the investigators. I have access to all the facts real time in a situation like that," said Manfred.

According to a similar CNN report, this incident of hacking between teams in the MLB is an addition to the recent cases of cyber break-ins among government sites, big company databases and bank accounts.

"Cases like this are rare, really rare. Corporate espionage via hacking might be common but companies rarely get caught for doing it," said top security researcher Mikko Hypponen.

In discussing accountability on the incident, CBS Sports said no employees or members of the Cardinals received punishment after the grave violation. The site added that the motive behind the hacking could be to put dirt on the work of Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow, who used to be an executive with the Cardinals until 2011.

In a statement quoted by CBS Sports, the Astros said they will not yet comment on the matter. 

In June 2014, ESPN has learned that Astros announced their servers had been hacked and that internal trade talks were published on the Internet. Initial investigation revealed that the breach was traced to a house in Jupiter, Florida, where the Cardinals held their spring training.

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