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Thread: Hacker Whacked

  1. #1
    Titanium Member efc's Avatar
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    Hacker Whacked

    Arrest Warrant Issued for N.Y. Times Hacker
    Fri September 5, 2003 07:54 PM ET
    SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Federal law enforcement officials have obtained an arrest warrant for a hacker who makes a habit of breaking into corporate computers and then publicly exposing the security holes, a spokeswoman for a federal public defender's office confirmed on Friday.

    The complaint against Adrian Lamo is sealed so the details were not released, said a spokeswoman in the Federal Public Defender's office in Sacramento, California, where Lamo's family lives.

    The spokeswoman said her office was contacted by either Lamo or his family to help with his representation given the pending arrest.

    Lamo could not immediately be reached for comment.

    In an interview with SecurityFocus.com published on the Web site on Friday, Lamo said he believed the warrant was related to his hacking into The New York Times' computer system early last year. He also said he did not plan to turn himself in.

    Lamo exploited weaknesses in the newspaper's password policies and gained access to social security numbers and home numbers for thousands of people, including former president Jimmy Carter, former secretary of state James Baker and actors Robert Redford and Warren Beatty, SecurityFocus.com reported.

    A spokeswoman for The New York Times did not immediately return a call seeking comment late on Friday. The U.S. Attorney's office for the southern district of New York declined to comment on the case.
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  2. #2
    Super Moderator Super Moderator Big Booger's Avatar
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    Well in one way, I think what he is doing is good. He is showing that security is weak, and these corporations need to do more to protect sensitive data. However, I think his rogue hacking, without consent is what in the end has landed him in the slammer.

    He is a criminal by law and should be treated as one. BUt common sense would dictate that what he was doing was to educate rather than infiltrate.

  3. #3
    Triple Platinum Member Thor's Avatar
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    He's been in contact with the authorities and refused to turn himself in until he knew exactly what the charges were. It looks as if the authorities don't give a rat's a$$ that he is trying to cooperate and have handed out a 'sealed' arrest warrant.

    In case you didn't know he's homeless at the moment.

    Addendum:

    He will probably be charged under the terrorist act which can net him close to life in prison. If not charged that way then threatened in order to make him plea bargain for a lesser sentence. That's the way they've been working things. Scare ya into thinking you'll go to prison forever so you'll cop out and they can clap themselves on the shoulder saying "job well done".

    I'm waiting for someone with the cajones and wealth to institute a legal battle against the legality of the so called 'terrorist act'.

    My rant!
    Last edited by Thor; September 7th, 2003 at 14:25 PM.

  4. #4
    Titanium Member efc's Avatar
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    This is one of those places where we disagree. I have heard the argument for years that these are good guys showing weaknesses in corporate systems. That is c*r*a*p. Many of these, jerk/criminals, have ended up with jobs with the corporations that they attack. That is a little like paying off terrorists so they won't attack you.

    I believe that these people should go straight to jail, should not pass go, and should not be paid $200. In fact, the jail penalty should be long enough to get everyones attention and a second offense should be double the first. They should experience everyones scorn. There should never be an argument that they are really not bad people.

    We have thousands of dark hackers. I am willing to live in a world where there are thousands of hackers living in jail. The world will be better without them.

    How did we get to a point where every computer user needs a firewall and anti-virus software. If someone gets attacked, we tend to blame the victim for not being secure. These people are terrorist. They cause great damage to everyone by raising prices to every product in every technology based country.

    As far as the young man being homeless - that shouldn't be a problem too long.
    Last edited by efc; September 7th, 2003 at 15:53 PM.
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  5. #5
    Security Intelligence TZ Veteran cash_site's Avatar
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    I agree with you EFC that hackers are bad and they just cause more trouble than good. However, without them we wouldnt know how to protect ourselves. They problem first started when the first virus/hacker went bad, and wrecked it for everyone else.

    Lets hope they dont turn their attention to public utilities or hospitals etc, we need mission-critical services 24/7.

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  6. #6
    Old and Cranky Super Moderator rik's Avatar
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    I have to agree with efc and cash_site on this one. For all the good he may think he is doing his methods are questionable. I've seen 2 different interviews with him so far on The SCREENSAVERS...and he really seems to be an odd character. From what I understod from the interview He is homeless by choice. He stays with different friends all the time, partly so he cannot be tracked. Kinda reminds me of Saddam...and he says that he hacks out of idle curiosity...just to see if it can be done. But if he really wants to help identify security problems, He should work for a security firm. Guess he will be the new martyr...and everyone will forget about Mitnick...

  7. #7
    Security Intelligence TZ Veteran cash_site's Avatar
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    Guess he will be the new martyr...and everyone will forget about Mitnick...
    A lot of people are jumping on the bandwagon, and trying to "infamous" like Mitnick... who is banned for even looking at comps LOL

    You always need one character in the family, but when everyone does it, it becomes lame, and just outright rude.

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  8. #8
    Super Moderator Super Moderator Big Booger's Avatar
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    Well,
    I think the difference between this guy and a black hat, is that he is publicising openly how he does it, what sites he hit etc...

    I think his aim is to educate. whether what he does is legal is not my decision..

    I think under the law he should be prosecuted.. but if you lock up every hacker that infiltrates and exploits a security vulnerability and then makes it public, you are going to slow down the fixes and patches...
    It is only through publicising the problems that you are going to get the companies to issue fixes.

    And then think about these "security" companies.. I think they are pressured not to hunt down every single hole or flaw in the code because it makes the big companies look bad.. MS could perhaps get at them someway.

    there should be an open consortium of sorts, that is independent and non-profit for software and hardware security..


    If not, then you leave open PCs and networks all over the world with the real black hats hacking away merrily..
    Last edited by Big Booger; September 9th, 2003 at 08:21 AM.

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