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No Friends of Mine …… or Are They?

Anonymous Mask.jpgI have a love hate relationship with Anonymous, Legion of Doom and the Masters of Deception.   They have paid for my house, put my girls through college, and have afforded me a few nice toys.  They have also aged me, turned my hair gray, kept me in a constant state of sleep deprivation and made me miss more important events than I care to admit.  But, I still I can’t live without them. They make me who I am and give my life purpose.  We are inexorably linked like the shark and the remora.

 

So just who are some of these friends of mine?

 

  • Jonathan James (aka c0mrade) – James gained notoriety when he became the first juvenile to be sent to prison for hacking. He was sentenced at the age of 16 for cracking into NASA computers, stealing software worth approximately $1.7 million.

 

  • Adrian Lamo (aka homeless hacker) – Lamo's claim to fame is his break-ins at major organizations like The New York Times and Microsoft.  Lamo used Internet connections at Kinko's, coffee shops and libraries to make his intrusions.

 

  • Kevin Mitnick – Self-proclaimed "hacker poster boy," Mitnick went through a highly publicized pursuit by authorities. The Department of Justice described him as "the most wanted computer criminal in United States history."

 

  • Robert Tappan Morris – Morris, son of former National Security Agency scientist Robert Morris, is known as the creator of the Morris Worm, the first computer worm to be unleashed on the Internet.  As a result of this crime, he was the first person prosecuted under the 1986 Computer Fraud & Abuse Act.

 

  • Kevin Poulsen (aka Dark Dante) – Gained recognition for his hack of LA radio's KIIS-FM phone lines, which earned him a brand new Porsche, among other items. Law enforcement dubbed him "the Hannibal Lecter of computer crime."

My circle of friends continues to grow as more and more hackers emerge each day. To each of them I toast on behalf of all of us in the computer security industry.  We will forever be gainfully employed and eternally grateful.  Sometimes you will win and sometimes we will win – this is called the balance of power.

 

To keep ahead of what hackers are using to attack companies like yours, check out HP’s Intelligent Security Solutions.

 

Who are some of your hacker friends? Follow me on Twitter @SecureMartini for more security insights.

Comments
JWSweeney | ‎09-30-2012 08:39 PM

Tari, very educational blog ... lots of lessons to be learned from these notable names from the computer crime files. The million .... probably the billion dollar question is how we find, "friend" and keep track of the next generation of soon to be notables .. before they do damage. Is keeping us on our toes enough to shut down and protect after we find out a hacker hole, or is anticipating and preventing the better route ... we all know the answer to that question ... but how to do it .. I look forward to finding out how you will do that!

TSchreider ‎10-01-2012 12:30 AM - edited ‎10-01-2012 11:49 AM

A number of years ago the FBI did a project to interview and profile hackers who were behind bars, In return for their participation they were offered minor privileges, like canteen credits. You may be interested in this research: http://www.infosectoday.com/Articles/Hackers_Profiling_Project.htm. Our ZDI takes a small bite out of the whole by offering to pay hackers for disclosures, but those out for big money will be harder to have on the Christmas card list. Thanks for post.

Nadhan | ‎10-02-2012 12:39 AM

Intriguing post, Tari.  How about the the inception of OODA into the minds of these "friends" of yours? extending the concepts brought out in movies like Inception and Minority Report?

 

Connect with Nadhan on: Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin and Journey Blog.

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About the Author
Tari is a Distinguished Technologist with 30 years of IT and cyber security experience. He is dual board certified in information security/b...
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