homepage Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from 54.166.116.36
register, free tools, login, search, pro membership, help, library, announcements, recent posts, open posts,
Become a Pro Member
Home / Forums Index / Local / Foo
Forum Library, Charter, Moderators: incrediBILL & lawman

Foo Forum

This 50 message thread spans 2 pages: 50 ( [1] 2 > >     
NASA hacker to make House of Lords appeal on Monday
Will he go this time?
BeeDeeDubbleU

WebmasterWorld Senior Member beedeedubbleu us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 6:19 pm on Jun 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

[scmagazineuk.com...]

 

arieng

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 6:56 pm on Jun 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

"I saw photos in space of things that didn't look man-made," McKinnon said. "And I saw an Excel spreadsheet with non-terrestrial officers with their names and ranks. That makes me think there's a space force being developed in secret".

No wonder the US authorities are so eager to get him locked up. :)

BeeDeeDubbleU

WebmasterWorld Senior Member beedeedubbleu us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 7:04 pm on Jun 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

IMO it's the people who were responsible for NASA IT security who should be locked up. He probably did them a favour by revealing how easy it was to hack them.

(This guy was not even an expert by the way.)

LifeinAsia

WebmasterWorld Administrator lifeinasia us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 7:32 pm on Jun 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

"I saw photos in space of things that didn't look man-made," McKinnon said. "And I saw an Excel spreadsheet with non-terrestrial officers with their names and ranks. That makes me think there's a space force being developed in secret".

Maybe he saw a NASA April Fool's Joke? Oh, wait, engineers don't have a sense of humor. Maybe someone there downloaded a Google April Fool's Day joke by mistake.

BeeDeeDubbleU

WebmasterWorld Senior Member beedeedubbleu us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 7:37 pm on Jun 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

It's no joke for McKinnon. He is facing a life sentence.

Lord Majestic

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 7:47 pm on Jun 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

It's no joke for McKinnon. He is facing a life sentence.

Maybe he should not have hacked into those computers? It's not like he is denying that he did it - he was caught red handed and the case is proven beyond doubt so much as not even he is denying it. If anyone deserved to be extradited it's him - not so much for what he did, but for the outright rubbish that he claims somehow justifies his his actions - one would imagine that extra terrestials who are advanced enough to fly to this planet from many light years away would use something else than Excel spreadsheet. Oh wait, maybe Mr Gates is involved? :)

BeeDeeDubbleU

WebmasterWorld Senior Member beedeedubbleu us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 8:55 pm on Jun 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

I am uncomfortable with the fact that the US government can extradite a UK citizen who has not really done anything major to harm them. He did not do this for profit or for political purposes. The outcome is that he has demonstrated the unbelievable deficiencies in their security systems and the ease with which they could be breached. This is the real scandal in this case!

What would have happened if it was someone really evil and malicious who had done this? What harm could have been done then?

No, I am afraid that it looks too much as though the US is trying to make an example of him because he is such a soft target. What would be achieved by jailing him for life? This is not Al Qaeda we are talking about here, just someone who is much easier to catch and who is extremely unlikely to re-offend.

Hang on a minute - perhaps that's it? Perhaps they are still not confident that they have closed the breach and that he could give them another red face? Perhaps they want him locked away for ever to cover their embarrassment.

LifeinAsia

WebmasterWorld Administrator lifeinasia us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 9:26 pm on Jun 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

The US government claims McKinnon caused $700,000 worth of damage.

Yes, let's tell the world they are free to hack into anyone's computer systems and cause hundreds of thousands of dollars of damage without any fear or reprisals or punishment. I assume the next time someone hacks into your servers and "not really do anything major to harm them" to the tune of $700K that you will be the first one to thank him for exposing the deficiencies in your network?

Lord Majestic

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 10:12 pm on Jun 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

I am uncomfortable with the fact that the US government can extradite a UK citizen who has not really done anything major to harm them.

Generally I'd agree with you, however in this case the person in question does not even deny the crime and compounds his guilt by telling what I can only describe (in my own view) lies about things that are laughable - if you check some of his interviews you will hear rhetoric about how bad Govt is hiding new free energy sources while the price of energy is growing in the world and pensioners in the UK are struggling with their fuel bills - his crime might be minor, but his ridiculous claims (for which of course he has no proof - somehow he was not professional enough to make screenshots or save those Excel documents).

Of course the US will make an example of him - he could have made a deal by admitting guilt and most likely would have served a short period of time, however he decided to make a very public fight and the price of losing this will certainly be very hard on him - rightfully so because, yet again, he admits that he did what he is accused of.

g1smd

WebmasterWorld Senior Member g1smd us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 10:20 pm on Jun 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

*** caused $700,000 worth of damage ***

Really? How, exactly?

Did the access make those computers fail? or lose data?

LifeinAsia

WebmasterWorld Administrator lifeinasia us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 11:01 pm on Jun 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

*** caused $700,000 worth of damage ***
Really? How, exactly?

It wasn't just NASA computers- 97 military and NASA computers altogether. You can read more [en.wikipedia.org].

Read the numerous posts here on WW about other people who have been hacked. You should NEVER assume that someone who hacked your computer just did so for fun. You should assume the intent was malicious and that the hacker left other code/Trojans that haven't activated yet.

So often the safest thing to do is wipe & reformat the disks, relaod the software, then restore a backup. This is not a 15-minute task. Especially if you have to sift through your backup to make sure it didn't backup any hacks or Tojans.

callivert

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 6:24 am on Jun 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

*** caused $700,000 worth of damage ***
Really? How, exactly?

It wasn't just NASA computers- 97 military and NASA computers altogether

I'm also skeptical about all the "damage" he caused. He was just snooping around, reading stuff he shouldn't, and he did it for a long time without anyone noticing or realising. "Damage" is a word being used very loosely, in a legal way, in order to nail the guy.

BeeDeeDubbleU

WebmasterWorld Senior Member beedeedubbleu us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 7:54 am on Jun 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

You should assume the intent was malicious and that the hacker left other code/Trojans that haven't activated yet.

Why should we assume this? I have read nothing about him leaving trojans or other code that did damage. AFAIK that was not his intent and he was not doing this for profit. No one has yet commented on the ineptitude of the people who made it possible for him to do this. THAT is my main concern about this case.

I am also concerned that he did not commit any crime on US soil. That has already been ascertained by the UK authorities but they are still willing to allow him to be extradited to the USA. How many cases have you heard of spammers and scammers from Nigeria, China or the former USSR being extradited to the USA? These are the people that I would like to see being made an example of not some nerd, who despite what the US authorities say did no real harm other than to embarrass them big time.

thecoalman

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 8:32 am on Jun 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

It should be assumed he did because:

The computer networks he is accused of hacking include networks owned by NASA, the US Army, US Navy, Department of Defense, and the US Air Force.

For them to not assume malicious intent would be negligence. These aren't computers where a virus or trojan is going to cause someone to lose a few bucks but instead could cause people to lose their lives.

FYI I wouldn't take the "Life Imprisonment" mentioned in that article or the "up to 70 years" mentioned in the wiki article seriously. Full sentences are rarely handed out here or carried out in the U.S. unless you are a repeat offender. More often than not you'll see a guy snetenced to "Life" which usually means 20 years in most sates and hes out in 10...

Lord Majestic

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 10:40 am on Jun 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

I'm also skeptical about all the "damage" he caused.

This is the cost of people who had to find evidence of hacking etc - such people can charge a lot of money so $700k might actually represent a bill from a big consultancy for this work. Chances are this bill is exaderated, but you are certainly looking at at least $70k - more importantly in this case is to prevent future cases of such undesireable activity - that's why US is making an example of him showing that people who commit crimes via the Net will be extradited and get jailed for (I hope) a long time. Sounds like a reasonable policy that every country should have.

In any case he won't get life sentence - probably 6-7 years, likely to go back home to serve this if he drops he idiotic comments.

I am also concerned that he did not commit any crime on US soil.

NASA computers are on US soil and crime was committed there. You don't really think that pressing a couple of buttons half the world across to blow something up (as an example) in USA or any other country won't commit crime there?

Anyway, this guy is going to experience full wrath of the law for his foolish attitude - don't do the crime if you can't serve the time.

wyweb



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 12:58 pm on Jun 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

For them to not assume malicious intent would be negligence

Exactly. Thank you.

Maybe that's all he did.. look around a little bit. You don't know that that's all he did though.

BeeDeeDubbleU

WebmasterWorld Senior Member beedeedubbleu us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 1:30 pm on Jun 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

For them to not assume malicious intent would be negligence

But their negligence has already been amply demonstrated. If they had been less negligent he would not have been able to do this. Remember that he was not an expert. Apparently he used a Perl script he downloaded from the net and was only caught when he tried to access a computer that someone was actually using. They shouldn't be trying to jail him. They should be offering him a bloody job!

More often than not you'll see a guy snetenced to "Life" which usually means 20 years in most sates and hes out in 10...

Oh well, that makes it alright then. He can do that standing on his head. ;)

Don't some of the comments about McKinnon on this thread tell their own story, "laughable", "foolish", "ridiculous", "not professional"? This is the guy who left all these NASA hotshots with jam on their faces. What does that make them?

that's why US is making an example of him showing that people who commit crimes via the Net will be extradited and get jailed for (I hope) a long time.

But they won't. How many of the worldwide scammers have been extradited to the US and jailed? I mean those Nigerians and Russians, etc. who have been embezzling billions of dollars each year from businesses and individuals in the US and the UK without fear of getting caught? [gartner.com...]

Have the US been making an example of them? Have they been approaching their governments and asking for help in finding and extraditing them?

thecoalman

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 1:52 pm on Jun 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

But their negligence has already been amply demonstrated. If they had been less negligent he would not have been able to do this.

If you forget to lock the front door on your house and get robbed the person robbing you is still responsible for their actions.

I forget the exact details but there was college student a few years back that pulled a similar stunt and hacked some government computers and left a "see what I can do message". If I remember correctly he too went to jail for a lengthy sentence. Just a prank...

LifeinAsia

WebmasterWorld Administrator lifeinasia us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 5:26 pm on Jun 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

I am also concerned that he did not commit any crime on US soil.

So if some Russian hacker steals your credit card information, you're not going to do anything because the crime wasn't committed on U.S. (or wherever you live) soil?

How many cases have you heard of spammers and scammers from Nigeria, China or the former USSR being extradited to the USA?

How many Nigerian scammers/SPAMMERS hack into government computers? There's a big difference between breaking criminal laws and breaking civil laws, including the resources/ability to investigate, extradite, and prosecute.

londrum

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 6:54 pm on Jun 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

"I saw photos in space of things that didn't look man-made,"

he probably saw a picture of the moon

akmac

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 7:40 pm on Jun 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

How many cases have you heard of spammers and scammers from Nigeria, China or the former USSR being extradited to the USA?

We don't have extradition agreements with the either the former USSR or China, but we do with the UK.

It would appear that NASA has yet to have accepted an offer to help the son of the deposed King of Niger Prince JOE EBOH, because if they had-the US could extradite him too.

He's lucky he wasn't a subject of extraordinary rendition. It isn't regulated by international treaties like extradition.

webjourneyman

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 8:53 pm on Jun 24, 2008 (gmt 0)


"I saw photos in space of things that didn't look man-made," McKinnon said. "And I saw an Excel spreadsheet with non-terrestrial officers with their names and ranks. That makes me think there's a space force being developed in secret".

Maybe he saw a NASA April Fool's Joke? Oh, wait, engineers don't have a sense of humor. Maybe someone there downloaded a Google April Fool's Day joke by mistake.

Hacking into 97 computers must take time, perhaps day's or weeks for someone of his (low-tech) caliber. Perhaps some webmaster spook in either DoD, army or other agency has a sense of humor, planting those Excel spreadsheet and pictures for him to find.

BeeDeeDubbleU

WebmasterWorld Senior Member beedeedubbleu us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 8:57 am on Jun 26, 2008 (gmt 0)

Hacking into 97 computers must take time, perhaps day's or weeks for someone of his (low-tech) caliber.

No, apparently it was quite easy. It seems that he did it using a script he downloaded from the Internet. Now if that was possible don't you think that he did them a favour by highlighting this?

Who is to say what harm could have been done by malicious people who were clever enought to do this without getting caught? Perhaps they had free rein too? Perhaps they still do?

MatthewHSE

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 3:00 pm on Jun 27, 2008 (gmt 0)

No, apparently it was quite easy. It seems that he did it using a script he downloaded from the Internet. Now if that was possible don't you think that he did them a favour by highlighting this?

He didn't intend to do them a favor, he committed a long series of crimes. Thus he should be punished for them.

Say I break into your house in the middle of the night, but happen to wake you up as I'm rummaging through your belongings? Will you thank me for pointing out how ineffective your locks were at keeping me out?

MatthewHSE

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 3:04 pm on Jun 27, 2008 (gmt 0)

By the way, this guy is a "former systems administrator." In other words, one might safely assume that he certainly is not a rank newbie, and that he had definite knowledge that he was doing something wrong.

BeeDeeDubbleU

WebmasterWorld Senior Member beedeedubbleu us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 3:55 pm on Jun 27, 2008 (gmt 0)

He has never denied that.

ronin

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 5:00 pm on Jun 27, 2008 (gmt 0)

the person in question does not even deny the crime

He does not deny his actions, but that's not the same thing. It is yet to be proven that a crime has even been committed. Even if that can be established, the gravity of the crime will still be a matter of dispute.

Say I break into your house in the middle of the night...

That's a false analogy. Your house is your privately-owned house. NASA belongs to the public. So we are not talking about unauthorised snooping of information on a privately owned system - but on a publicly owned system.

If the public owns systems on which information is kept which is to the benefit of the public - this is McKinnon's claim - then, arguably, the public should know about it.

To draw an analogy: it's not a crime when an overseas non-Chinese citizen makes a temporary dent in the Great Firewall of China, allowing Chinese locals to briefly use search engines to look up how the Beijing authorities responded to Tianenmen Square demonstrations in 1989, is it? But of course, this is information that the Beijing administration would not like to be widely available, so they will certainly call such hacking "a crime".

Do actions constitute misdeeds or crimes whenever the administration (be it the government of a de-facto one party state or a de-facto two party state) say they do?

Probably one for the courts to decide.

LifeinAsia

WebmasterWorld Administrator lifeinasia us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 5:11 pm on Jun 27, 2008 (gmt 0)

So we are not talking about unauthorised snooping of information on a privately owned system - but on a publicly owned system.
Wrong- I suggest you re-read the article:
He is accused of illegally accessing computers belonging to the US army, navy, air force, NASA, the Department of Defense as well as a number of private companies.

Additionally, my social security number and lots of other private information about me is stored on numerouns "publicly owned systems," but that does NOT mean anyone has the right to access it.

[edited by: LifeinAsia at 5:12 pm (utc) on June 27, 2008]

Lord Majestic

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 6:02 pm on Jun 27, 2008 (gmt 0)

If the public owns systems on which information is kept which is to the benefit of the public - this is McKinnon's claim - then, arguably, the public should know about it.

He is not even an American citizen, he did not pay taxes in USA to fund these "public" services, but even if he did then it is no excuse to break law in such a way for supposed search of information that might be in the interest of the public. He claims of what he found there (but of course he was not technically capable to make even screenshot) are so laughable it is not even worth mentioning them.

MatthewHSE

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3676894 posted 8:50 pm on Jun 27, 2008 (gmt 0)

He has never denied that.

No, but you seem to have been making the argument that since he was such an amateur about the whole thing, he shouldn't be punished. My point is that he isn't an amateur. (Not that it would matter even if he was...)

Say I break into your house in the middle of the night...

That's a false analogy. Your house is your privately-owned house. NASA belongs to the public. So we are not talking about unauthorised snooping of information on a privately owned system - but on a publicly owned system.

Even if this was true (which it isn't - see LifeInAsia's comments), this English guy isn't part of "the public" that owns it. And even if he was, there's plenty of publicly-owned data out there that you can't (and shouldn't) just get for the taking.

It seems like an open-and-shut case to me. He admits hacking the computers. Hacking the computers was a crime. Crime deserves punishment.

This 50 message thread spans 2 pages: 50 ( [1] 2 > >
Global Options:
 top home search open messages active posts  
 

Home / Forums Index / Local / Foo
rss feed

All trademarks and copyrights held by respective owners. Member comments are owned by the poster.
Home ¦ Free Tools ¦ Terms of Service ¦ Privacy Policy ¦ Report Problem ¦ About ¦ Library ¦ Newsletter
WebmasterWorld is a Developer Shed Community owned by Jim Boykin.
© Webmaster World 1996-2014 all rights reserved