Two California teenagers pleaded guilty on July 29 to charges that they hacked into several U.S. government computers earlier this year and installed sophisticated programs to intercept passwords on the machines.

In an agreement with federal prosecutors, the 16-year-old boys each pleaded guilty to one count of illegally accessing a government computer and one count of wiretapping. In exchange, prosecutors asked U.S. District Judge Maxine M. Chesney to sentence the boys to probation but did not specify for how long.

The teenagers were suspected of worming their way into at...

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