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NASA Hacker Wins Right to Extradition Hearing

samzenpus posted more than 7 years ago | from the just-send-him-over dept.

Security 217

E5Rebel writes "Gary McKinnon, the UK-based ex-systems administrator accused of conducting the biggest military hack of all time, has won the right to have his case against extradition to the U.S. heard by the House of Lords."

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aliens are for real (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081121)

nasa is full off a bunch of drunk, diaper wearing, jealous, gun taunting, sabotaging, no good bunch of people.. DO NOT TRUST NASA

Re:aliens are for real (-1, Offtopic)

ZachMG (1122511) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081133)

no your wrong, My god, it's full of stars.

Re:aliens are for real (0, Offtopic)

dclozier (1002772) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081147)

Is that you Gary? :D

Re:aliens are for real (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081171)

Have YOU put any robots on Mars lately? No? Well FUuuUUuUCK - YOUUUU!

Re:aliens are for real (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081191)

Have YOU put any robots on Mars lately?

And what proof do you have that they did besides a few videos and their assurances?

Re:aliens are for real (0, Offtopic)

RockoTDF (1042780) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081519)

Well there is this car my dad bought me that drives off and shit....

Re:aliens are for real (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081619)

Yes actually, I have and I'd like to see you prove any different.

Re:aliens are for real (1)

jimbug (1119529) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081681)

And I'd like to see you prove that it is fake.

Re:aliens are for real (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081723)

Have you ever been sitting on the toilet, taking a monster shit. Your cock is fairly stiff and you notice that's not urine but a bit of precum leaking out. Yeah, it feels so fucking good to stroke your cock a little while a big fat turd squeezes out of your cornhole. Only problem is, you clench your ass and shit smears all over your ass. Not good.

Anyhow, wearing a butt plug provides that same anal stimulation without the mess.

Re:aliens are for real (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081871)

No, but the ESA sure have!

Re:aliens are for real (-1, Offtopic)

Eravnrekaree (467752) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081205)

I read about this man several years ago and his claims to have accessed some incredible information about exotic anti gravity, free energy and aliens. What really didn't make a whole lot of sense to me, is if he had in fact done this, and accessed information on fantastic technology that is being withheld that could help us solve our energy crises for instance, he did not keep any record of his finding or any proof at all. That it seems would be the first logical thing a person would do, especially regarding something of such importance to humanity that people really ought to know about. Here we are driving our cars burning up oil that will be gone in a few decades, destroying the environment, and meanwhile we have children starving and living in poverty all over the planet, withholding a technology that could improve quality of life drastically and end poverty would truly be a crime against humanity.

Re:aliens are for real (0)

Eravnrekaree (467752) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081257)

I should add i don't condone what he did. I am against such sorts of illegal activities. What he did I beleive was still of a look but done touch sort variety, not quite as harmful as someone bent on destruction, but still not something i condon. But nevertheless if you could show proof of these claims he made, that would have significant implications in helping us solve many of our problems such as our fossil fuel dependance. An supply of energy without having to burn up dirty fuels and ruin the environment to extract and process them would be a dream come true. Clean, inexpensive, safe, truly renewable and readily available energy would be a god send.

Re:aliens are for real (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081413)

I love how so many people want to jump on the help the starving children bandwagon. You know why people starve in Africa? It's cause they have like 30 children. Free energy will never be something that average people will be allowed access to. Think about the economics of it. Give the world free energy and we can continue to breed and overpopulate the earth.

Re:aliens are for real (4, Insightful)

omeomi (675045) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081649)

You know why people starve in Africa? It's cause they have like 30 children.

I think, generally speaking, when you have a vast impoverished region, it has more to do with horribly corrupt governments, and not so much to do with having "like 30 children". From what I understand, families in highly impoverished areas with high mortality rates do tend to have a lot of children, with the hope that some of them will actually survive, and maybe even prosper, but I would suggest that's more an effect of poverty rather than a cause of it. The reason that average American doesn't have tons of children isn't because we're smarter than the rest of the world, it's because all of our children have a reasonably good chance at survival, and a good chance at a comfortable life. Their chances at success are made better if we only have a few children, so we can afford to pay for their education, but in a region like Darfur, having just 2 children and hoping for the best probably means none of your children will make it to adulthood...

Re:aliens are for real (0, Offtopic)

DarkIye (875062) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081963)

Exactly. And since the only way to feed yourself is to run your own farm, you need quite a few farm hands to carry out all the necessary tasks. The only free labour (no money to hire anyone) is your own children. Add in the fact that there's no way in hell you're going to have savings for later life (and thus you need a progeny), that most of your kids will be miscarried, die in childbirth or early life, or get shot by/recruited into a gang or child army, and you realise that your only option is to have kids, and lots of them.

Re:aliens are for real (0, Offtopic)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082663)

From what I understand, families in highly impoverished areas with high mortality rates do tend to have a lot of children, with the hope that some of them will actually survive, and maybe even prosper, but I would suggest that's more an effect of poverty rather than a cause of it. The reason that average American doesn't have tons of children isn't because we're smarter than the rest of the world, it's because all of our children have a reasonably good chance at survival, and a good chance at a comfortable life. Their chances at success are made better if we only have a few children, so we can afford to pay for their education, but in a region like Darfur, having just 2 children and hoping for the best probably means none of your children will make it to adulthood...
That accounts for some of the difference, but not all of it. It does not explain the fact that, in most First World countries, the birthrate is low enough that population in fact decreases, while in most poor countries it does instead increase, and it does that in the poorest African countries in particular.

Re:aliens are for real (2, Informative)

vidarh (309115) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082837)

In poor countries, having children grow to adulthood is an insurance for your old age.

Industrialized countries all used to have similarly have high birthrates until life expectancy started increasing as better hygiene and medicine made an impact together with improved food availability, and particularly as infant mortality dropped.

However, birth rates in most sub-Saharan countries have now finally started falling, coinciding with growing urbanization, and steadily dropping infant mortality. In fact, in some countries the birth rate have dropped by 20-30 percent over the last couple of decades.

The particularly high birth rates over the last decades was similar to those found in Europe a century ago, just as the effects of reducing infant mortality was creating a huge gap because people were still reproducing according to the old patterns. Further reductions in infant mortality combined with education and improved availability of contraceptives was what closed that gap and brought European birthrates down over the following decades.

This guy sounds like a Skr1p7 k1dd13. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081477)

A "former system administrator"? What, did he run a home email server using Windows 2000 and IIS?

The guy spent some time locating unsecured entry points to high profile sites and is then heralded by the clueless media rabble as some kind of "uberhacker", instead of the fool he really is.

It doesn't take skill to do the kind of thing his type did, just a lack of good sense. He probably thought nobody would ever notice...maybe he even left clues so that he would get noticed...

whats wrong with w2k and iis? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081817)

lunix freak.

Re:aliens are for real (1, Troll)

sssssss27 (1117705) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081505)

Just because the technologies don't exist doesn't mean he didn't read about them. Perhaps NASA has some dummy files set up to occupy anyone that actually does it get in. It's happened before where a guy needed to slow down a hacker in order for a trace to be performed. The non-fiction story is written in the book The Cuckoo's Egg [wikipedia.org]

Re:aliens are for real (1)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081599)

The non-fiction story is written in the book The Cuckoo's Egg

Which is indeed an interesting (if, these days, rather quaint) read. But: his honeypot was plausible(-ish) stuff. The twit from the UK, in this case, already had himself convinced - having watched too many episodes of The X-Files - that all sorts of mysterious alien technology was being hidden by NASA, and so every context-less snippet of anything he saw just propped up his delusion. That, or instead of being delusional, he's just a particularly flaming liar. Or both. Doesn't matter... I don't think NASA would set up an "alien tech" honeypot. The institutional sense of humor isn't that far along.

Re:aliens are for real (5, Funny)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081211)

Your comment just reminded me of a comic strip. [elgoonishshive.com]

Secretary (undercover alien working for the CIA): Would either of you care for more coffee?
Agent Wolf: You didn't fertilize it with alien mind control spores, did you?
Secretary: For the last time, agent Wolf, I AM NOT AN ALIEN.
Agent Wolf: YOU HAVE A TAIL!!!
Their boss: Agent Wolf, that's enough! Or do you want to be sent to sensitivity training again?
Agent Wolf: No, sir.

I said it before (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081141)

and I'll say it again.

Poxie servers" [digg.com] are illegal hacking tools which let communist Open Sourcerers destroy America. Luckily the Limeys [shelleytherepublican.com] are not very clever. Nevertheless, only the death penalty is good enough for these evil hackers [shelleytherepublican.com] .

Big hair b-rock bands (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081145)

I'm not even sure if the House of Lords [wikipedia.org] will even be interested in hearing the case.

Re:Big hair b-rock bands (-1, Flamebait)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081159)

Since they basically rubber stamp American foreign policy, what's the point?

Plea bargain (5, Informative)

l33t.g33k (903780) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081153)

From TFA:

They accused US investigators of trying to coerce McKinnon into accepting a secret plea bargain by threatening him with a long prison sentence if he did not collaborate.
Hmmm... that's a strange thing to criticize... this is a pretty standard practice in US criminal law - cooperate, forfeit your right to a trial, and you get off easy.

Re:Plea bargain (4, Insightful)

_KiTA_ (241027) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081343)

Hmmm... that's a strange thing to criticize... this is a pretty standard practice in US criminal law - cooperate, forfeit your right to a trial, and you get off easy.

Except, is that legal in the UK?

I mean, yea, yeah, he's being tried in the US. But don't his rights as a UK citizen apply as well?

Rights? (3, Interesting)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081553)

Here is where we get into some thorny issues. What are rights? Can someone has more rights in one country than another? Is whats fair here fair in in a different country. If we agree that there are differences in rights between people living in one country versus another, than how can we even talk about human rights abuses? I maintain that your rights are as the US constitution would state: God given, meaning in this context they are the same everywhere independent of any countries laws. To believe in universal rights, is to believe in universal wrongs. In this case, he should be tried for his alleged crimes as his potential treatment in the US would not violate his rights ( as they are unlikely to sentence him to the death penalty or Gitmo his ass).

or can anybody defend moral relativism and still support Universal Human Rights? I'd be interested to hear the argument, to say the least.

Re:Rights? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20082003)

There are differences in morality and ethics between peoples, countries, and in time. The fact that we can argue about human rights is no argument to say that rights are universally the same(we argue about a lot of nonsense). In addition, there are treaties around that agree on human rights. That is why they work, not because they are some universal set-in-stone kind of rights. It is just because we all agree on them, that they are universal. And it would not surprise me in the least if they will be adapted over time; which would also show they are not universal at all.

I'm sorry to break it to you, seems like the founding fathers got it wrong. (well, in their defense, it depends on how you read it. Don't they say "we =believe= that these rights...". In that case, it shows that they know it is their view of ethics. We believe, and thus someone else may well believe different things.)

Re:Rights? (3, Interesting)

Corporate Troll (537873) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082885)

I'm European and while visiting the US, I made a joke that went way over someones head. That person said that I couldn't say that, and I replied that the US had free speech... That person then replied that as a foreigner I had no rights in the US.

Now, that person may have been joking, but it most certainly didn't look that way when she said that.... The scary thing is that right now, I'm pretty sure that is entirely true.

Re:Plea bargain (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20082391)

If a US investigator has used some kind of investigation practices on a UK citizen residing in UK, and those practices are illegal in UK, then US should extradite the investigators to UK for a fair trial. Of course this is not the case, because human rights violations do not deserve such vigorous corrective action as economic misdemeanors do.

Re:Plea bargain (5, Informative)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081385)

I once had a police offer tell me that, in the UK and Australia, such things are illegal. This is actually just holding the police to the same standard as the rest of society. In the US there's laws against "making deals" but they don't apply to the police (or the government's prosecutors). For example:

519.030 Compounding a crime.
(1) A person is guilty of compounding a crime when:
(a) He solicits, accepts or agrees to accept any benefit upon an agreement or
understanding that he will refrain from initiating a prosecution for a crime; or
(b) He confers, offers, or agrees to confer any benefit upon another person upon
agreement or understanding that such other person will refrain from initiating
a prosecution for a crime.
(2) In any prosecution under this section, it is a defense that the benefit did not exceed
an amount which the defendant reasonably believed to be due as restitution or
indemnification for harm caused by the offense.
(3) Compounding a crime is a Class A misdemeanor.
So yeah, if I shoot you and say "I'll give you $10k to keep quiet" then I'm compounding a crime. If you accept then we're both compounding a crime.

Most the time the deals made in the US are of the "plead guilty" variety, not the "talk and we won't prosecute" variety, so this particular law wouldn't apply, but you get the idea.

This is Informative (1)

rajafarian (49150) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081567)

I'd mod you up if I had mod points. Thanks for the info, oh man with a Slashdot ID somewhat higher than mine!

Re:Plea bargain (4, Interesting)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081705)

Compounding a crime has nothing to do with plea bargaining. In almost all cases, the defendant could be considered to have committed several different crimes, with different penalties. A plea bargain is just a negotiation between the two sides as to which crime the defendant will plead guilty to and how great a penalty will be imposed.

Immunity from prosecution in return for testimony comes closer, of course, but in that case, the benefit is to the public, not to the prosecutor personally.

Re:Plea bargain (1)

gardyloo (512791) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081959)

if I shoot you and say "I'll give you $10k to keep quiet" then I'm compounding a crime.
Couldn't you just save $10k and possible prosecution by shooting me again?

Re:Plea bargain (1)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082299)

The 10K isn't the good guys. It is from the bad guys wanting you to keep quiet about the crime you know about.

Basically, I says that If you commit a crime to cover a crime up, which is what Paying you to keep your mouth shut about me being around those two dead bodies would be. But now you are part of a compound crime and could suffer more of a penalty then if you just took a bribe.

Re:Plea bargain (1)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082855)

If you have to pay a guy $10K to keep quiet after you shoot him, then you should learn more about "gun control".

Re:Plea bargain (5, Interesting)

the_womble (580291) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081813)

Hmmm... that's a strange thing to criticize... this is a pretty standard practice in US criminal law - cooperate, forfeit your right to a trial, and you get off easy.

Except that the rest of the world regards it as a loathsome practice designed to get someone in jail for something, even when there is a lack of conclusive evidence against them. It is getting criminal convictions through coercion rather than evidence.

Re:Plea bargain (1)

Cathbard (954906) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082703)

Just because you are used to plea bargaining that doesn't make it right. It's a disgraceful way to conduct a court and is one thing that is held up by anti-american detractors as an example of why the rest of the world should resist going down the same path. The David Hicks fiasco showed this in stark relief. It might seem normal to US citizens to behave this way but that doesn't make it acceptable to others.

Video of the Minnesota bridge collapse -- graphic (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081161)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eBGIQ7ZuuiU [youtube.com]

worse than 9/11 IMHO, as hard as that is to believe

wow

Re:Video of the Minnesota bridge collapse -- graph (0, Offtopic)

begbiezen (1081757) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081271)

link no good nothing (new) comes up for bridge or minnesota

Obligatory (0, Flamebait)

CautionaryX (1061226) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081181)

Red rover, red rover send Gary McKinnon on over! Ah, its so nice to see our two governments playing along so nicely, don't you think?

question.... (5, Insightful)

lordvalrole (886029) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081251)

How do they figure £475,000 worth of damage? I don't know much about the case (or really anything of it) but did he actually do harmful damage to the crap he hacked into...or is it potential damage? I can never trust half the money numbers people throw around these days.

Re:question.... (2, Interesting)

Eravnrekaree (467752) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081323)

If all he did was look, I think 475,000 is a really excessive. I beleive i did read that is pretty much he did, he wasnt interested in creating havoc but just having a look. It doesn't make it right and its not something i condone, but some of these penalties go beyond what seems reasonable. If he actually didnt cause any actual damage to the systems, perhaps community service might be more porportional to the crime it would seem to me.

Re:question.... (5, Insightful)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081555)

But - if those systems were your responsibility - what would it take you to satisfy the people you report to that there was no damage? How many hours of review, extra archiving, and other admin chores would you face in the wake of known break in? Do you just take the cracker's word for it that he didn't alter anything, or do you have to spend lots of time checking that out, and probably get some third parties involved in auditing that look-see, just to be sure? None of that is free, and most of it's very expensive.

Re:question.... (2, Interesting)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081695)

Also tack on the cost of equipment seized as evidence. There's been some changes in how things are handled recently. But back around the time period of this case, it wasn't uncommon for the FBI to lay claim to entire systems. If the budget-strapped lab was lucky, they got back everything but the hard drives. In at least one case I know of, a couple Unix workstations went away with the promise that they'd be back at the lab within the year. Anything that goes in to this prosecution-driven black hole needs to be replaced. That only adds to the cost of the incident.

Re:question.... (1)

pacov (512801) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081749)

My guess is you DO NOT condone his actions (2nd time you mentioned this to keep the CIA, Interpol, and any other "BlackOp" related org off your butt), but don't mind skirting the fact that what he looked at (by TFA) was only valued at £475,000 (guessing U.S. $750,000). You would think a walk through the NASA network (by the article NASA is now a "military" complex...last I heard it was based on a civilian charter), would warrant something closer to national park vandalization penalties.

NASA is not a military complex (by the books anyhow), Gary McKinnon IS a British citizen and should be governed by U.K. laws, and if Gary is sent over to us via Club Gitmo as our elected officials apparently want, I want to see ALL Chinese citizens that (attempt to) break into our (U.S.) institutions sent over, also. --- We can do this non-U.S. Citizens can't we...'Computer and Internet Protocol Address Verifier' via the F.B.I. should do it...or is it only for U.S. citizens?

What?! China isn't our bitch and will send over it's citizens on our whim?

What the hell, hopefully we'll change our generalized ideals the next election.

Peace

Re:question.... (1)

Agelmar (205181) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081945)

Oh how I wish you were right in your estimate. £475,000 is about US$964,867. (Yes, it's now worse than 2:1).

Re:question.... (1)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082361)

Who the hell is ripping you off? You both are high with actual numbers. It is about $649,443 verified by two seperate currency converters.

I hope you aren't one of those people who have seen the stocks, the unemployment and everything else we gage the economy by defy the entire it's crap argument and produce better numbers then the Clinton administration so you look at the exchange rate to justify how bad the US is doing are you? I mean, Because it sounds like someone is lying to you again.

Re:question.... (1)

badfish99 (826052) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082533)

No, he's right; it's more than 2 dollars to the pound now. Perhaps you confused pounds with euros?

Re:question.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20082563)

Hello there! Just to point out that a £ is not a ! Oops... Conversion rate from to $ is ~1.36. Conversion rate from £ to $ is ~2.05.

Re:question.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20082645)

Looks like slashdot can't handle the euro symbol...
Hello there! Just to point out that a £ is not a EUR! Oops... Conversion rate from EUR to $ is ~1.36. Conversion rate from £ to $ is ~2.05.

Re:question.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20082619)

Wow TWO you say? It helps if you're using the proper currency. . . .

Re:question.... (1)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082393)

NASA has always been both public and military. They did this to both funnel money into NASA with military projects and to aid military research. It is quite possible that you could see military stuff in the NASA computer system and vice versa.

Now, as for it being close to vandalizing a government park or building. You have to remember that along with the fine, you will have to pay restitution for the damages you caused. This makes that number in line with what your thinking.

Now, I would think that if he was a UK citizen and broke a UK law in the UK he would be subject to the UK laws. But seeing how he changed the place he broke into and it turned out to be american, I don't see why it isn't the same as a tourist committing a crime while visiting america. You might ass that he went back to england before getting caught but it is the same.

Figured out RIAA-style (3, Funny)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081355)

He allegendly downloaded at 1266 files * $750 per file * approx 0.5 GBP per $ = approx GBP 475k

Re:question.... (1)

nacturation (646836) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081545)

Telling them "I *might* have hacked your servers", even if you're computer illiterate, causes them to launch an investigation and tear apart their entire network looking for evidence which probably costs $200K in wages, vendor fees, consultants, etc. The remainder comes into play if they actually find something and have to take action.
 

Re:question.... (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081673)

How do they figure £475,000 worth of damage?

a loon who was still employable as a system administrator hacks into a military network. inevitably triggering a very expensive audit and perhaps a rebuild of the net.

Re:question.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20082169)

inevitably triggering a very expensive audit and perhaps a rebuild of the net."
This was then needed anyway. Or do you imply that security is not realy needed?

Tit for tat (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081337)

Well, it needs saying so someone better had. Firstly the guy is an unhinged twunt who got high on too much weed and went looking for "UFO evidence".
Ergo, he represents absolutely ZERO threat to the security of any group (unless of course you guys actually DO have those UFOs hidden :)

So basically he's being punished because he embarrased a US institution that should know better about computer security.

Secondly, we here in the UK are in a bit of pickle and wish this would go away. See, some crazy Russian murdered another Russian spy in London with some nasty radioactive poison. Pretty serious right? But if we want him to stand trial and be extradited from Russia then we'd have to give them an equally unpleasant mafia boss who is hiding in London that Putin wants. Stalemate. Both countries are hiding behind the skirt of "We don't extradite people to countries where they would face danger or unfair trial"

Problem: The USA is a country that tortures prisoners and disappears people to secret prisons and we know this because the UN has condemned it as a human rights abuser. We have a serious crediblity problem if this guy goes to the USA.

I see a deal.

Let's say, we give this dangerous hacker to the USA and they promise he'll get a fair trial In return and we'll take George W Bush for the multiple war crimes he's indited with to the International Crimial Court at the Haugue (and promise he will get a fair trial) and let's call it quits huh?

Re:Tit for tat (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081397)

we know this because the UN has condemned [the USA] as a human rights abuser
we'll take George W Bush for the multiple war crimes he's indited with

Please cite your sources.

Re:Tit for tat (1, Troll)

cunina (986893) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081565)

You're asking for sources from someone who can't spell "indicted?" Don't hold your breath.

Re:Tit for tat (3, Funny)

rob1980 (941751) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081569)

The Daily KOS, duh.

Re:Tit for tat (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20082085)

Please cite your sources.
CNN, CBS, NBC, ABC. Even Fox News occasionally lets down the side and reports a fact or two.

Re:Tit for tat (2, Informative)

thej1nx (763573) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082323)

Will this one do or do I get modded/called a troll for posting a fact?


http://hrw.org/english/docs/2006/05/19/usdom13418. htm [hrw.org]

Reality is not what Bush preaches from his pulpit.

I assume that now you or someone else will post a large list of countries that have worse records?

Fine. But none of those are taking a holier-than-thou approach for excuses of invading other countries, are they?

Re:Tit for tat (2, Interesting)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081563)

So basically he's being punished because he embarrased a US institution that should know better about computer security.
You're wrong on this point. He's facing legal action because that's how the law works. He was caught during a time when NASA's practical concept of information security had more to do with handing over evidence to the FBI so they can go after the person than taking the technical steps required to make yourself a difficult target. Now he's facing down the slow grind of the law and trying every possible thing he can to avoid the crunch.

And while you or I might be embarrassed if we were a NASA official, I doubt you'll find one involved in this case. NASA (and much of the US Gov't) just doesn't get this kind of thing (or at least - didn't at one time... how much things have changed is another discussion).

Redux (1)

rs79 (71822) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081575)

Are you saying NASA's security is so bad a drug addled lunatic can break it?

Re:Tit for tat (1)

Oldav (533444) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081629)

Well said, as for citing sources, its obvious that statement is true to anyone with a brain!

Re:Tit for tat (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081645)

The UN condemning something is hardly evidence of anything, but I don't think what you're talking about actually happened. As it stands, the US is far gentler on our prisoners than most countries. Certainly gentler than freaking Britain. Have you heard of Irish Terrorists? Do you brits even have any rights anymore? The US is headed in the wrong way on privacy, and Bush is a huge part of the problem, but thank God I'm not living in horrible Britain where I cannot protect myself from thugs or spying government cameras.

And Britain is actually a lovely place, too. But the US isn't some demon nation. think for yourself, pal!

Re:Tit for tat (3, Informative)

kegon (766647) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081755)

So basically he's being punished because he embarrased a US institution that should know better about computer security.
You have got to be joking! He has only embarrassed himself, and now the joke is on him. Read this interview [bbc.co.uk] :
  • He scanned 65,000 machines in about "8 minutes" by "tying together other people's machines" using a 56k dial up connection
  • During a hacking escapade he chatted to an engineer who "saw" him, via WordPad
  • His connection was so slow he wrote a clever program that "turned the colour down to 4bit colour and the screen resolution really, really low, and even then the picture was still juddering". Juddering ?! What kind of display was he using, a slide projector ?
  • He couldn't save any of the pictures he downloaded but despite the "juddering" low resolution "It was a picture of something that definitely wasn't man-made" and what with the slow connection, when he got cut off "I saw the guy's hand move across."
C'mon, this guy is an utter joke, none of the above is plausible. If any of these claims were anywhere near true then he is a script kiddy at best. Mentally unstable more like.

See, some crazy Russian murdered another Russian spy in London with some nasty radioactive poison. Pretty serious right?
Yep, a hell of a lot more serious than some gangster boss living in the UK is when a foreign government sanctions the use of radioactive materials on foreign soil. This is no mere assassination. What if the UK dropped a dirty bomb to the home address of the prime suspect in Russia ? That would be an act of war, wouldn't it ?

Re:Tit for tat (5, Insightful)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081977)

* He scanned 65,000 machines in about "8 minutes" by "tying together other people's machines" using a 56k dial up connection
        * During a hacking escapade he chatted to an engineer who "saw" him, via WordPad
        * His connection was so slow he wrote a clever program that "turned the colour down to 4bit colour and the screen resolution really, really low, and even then the picture was still juddering". Juddering ?! What kind of display was he using, a slide projector ?
        * He couldn't save any of the pictures he downloaded but despite the "juddering" low resolution "It was a picture of something
that definitely wasn't man-made" and what with the slow connection, when he got cut off "I saw the guy's hand move across."
C'mon, this guy is an utter joke, none of the above is plausible. If any of these claims were anywhere near true then he is a script kiddy at best. Mentally unstable more like.
The first item sounds like a botnet. I've (legally) done the second item, over VNC. The third item sounds plausible if he turns the VNC bit depth way, way down. And, yes, the outcome would behave very much like a slide projector on a dial-up connection.

As for the fourth item, I don't know why he didn't think to take a screenshot of his VNC window; That would have given him something to save. And I don't know what he was referring to by some guy's hand moving.

All in all, it sounds like he used a botnet to find a PC running unprotected VNC, and connected to it with compression turned way up, and color depth turned way down. At some point, some poor guy noticed his computer acting up on his own, and chatted with the cracker by opening up a text editor and taking turns typing. All of this is very plausible.

Re:Tit for tat (1)

zoomshorts (137587) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082063)

Precisely. Well explained.

Re:Tit for tat (1)

kegon (766647) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082485)

The first item sounds like a botnet.

Isn't that what I'm implying ? He's scanning 65k machines via his botnet, running password checkers in just over 8 minutes. And he checks the IP addresses of all connected machines and can find whether they are military bases or not, 'cause he's got a list of military IP addresses ?

The third item sounds plausible if he turns the VNC bit depth way, way down

So he has VNC turned down to 4 bits but he can clearly see something is not man made ? Why would VNC judder ? The worst I've had is parts of the screen refreshing very slowly - but he's viewing a static image. And on this super slow connection it just so happens that the first picture he pulls up has the juicy details he's after ? Please. What about the bit where he says "although it was a low-resolution picture it was very close up" and "no rivets, no seams" ? Can you see individual rivets on the space shuttle or on the ISS from the higher quality, official NASA footage ?

some poor guy noticed his computer acting up on his own, and chatted with the cracker by opening up a text editor and taking turns typing. All of this is very plausible

Read the article, it's not "some guy" it's a "network engineer", in NASA, who thinks it's normal for someone else to be using his computer ? And what, he just fires up WordPad for a chat, as you normally do when someone is hacking your machine ?

Re:Tit for tat (1)

thej1nx (763573) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082187)

What kind of clueless moderator mods this informative???


I take it that you have not heard of VNC or botnets?

A botnet is where a hacker takes control of a large number of computers(via viruses, trojans or other means) and uses them as a large cluster to perform collaborative tasks.

VNC is a protocol where you can send the screenshot images of the display to a remote computer, as well as providing control of keyboard and mouse, thus in effect allowing remote control of a computer.

And one would assume that a simple gun or just a normal bomb will be sufficient for state-sanctioned assassinations, no? Been reading/watching too many thriller novels/movies, are we?

Re:Tit for tat (1)

kegon (766647) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082569)

Yes, yes, we know what a botnet is; and VNC. It's stretching it a bit to think this "super hacker" was doing all this stuff on a 56K dial up and 4 bit VNC don't you think ?

And one would assume that a simple gun or just a normal bomb will be sufficient for state-sanctioned assassinations, no?

Yeah, I would have thought so. So why did the Russian government use radioactive material to attack someone in a foreign country ? Don't you think that the trail (which spread to several places in London [bbc.co.uk] ) could be likened to a dirty bomb ? And how many places can you get that stuff ? Two or three [bbc.co.uk] , which makes it highly likely to be state sanctioned. Do you think that's a fair comparison, Russia can assassinate someone in your country using a highly contaminating radioactive toxin against trying to extradite a gangster ?

Been reading/watching too many thriller novels/movies, are we?
Read before you post!

Re:Tit for tat (4, Interesting)

cycoj (1010923) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082145)

Secondly, we here in the UK are in a bit of pickle and wish this would go away. See, some crazy Russian murdered another Russian spy in London with some nasty radioactive poison. Pretty serious right? But if we want him to stand trial and be extradited from Russia then we'd have to give them an equally unpleasant mafia boss who is hiding in London that Putin wants. Stalemate. Both countries are hiding behind the skirt of "We don't extradite people to countries where they would face danger or unfair trial"
Actually it is explicitly forbidden by the Russian constitution. I just read up on this, because I thought that almost all states don't extradite their own citizens (Germany has a similar "Artikel" in their constitution). Apparently it is a lot less common in common law countries. So the US, the UK ... do extradite their own citizens. So bottom line the UK are demanding that the Russians break their constitution.

Don't you mean "Cracker" (2, Insightful)

racyrefinedraj (981243) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081377)

I read "Nasa Hacker" as a talented programmer employed by NASA. Isn't this place nerdy enough not to fall into calling crackers hackers?

Re:Don't you mean "Cracker" (1)

loteck (533317) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081409)

We're apparently not even nerdy enough to properly capitalize NASA in the story headline.

Be that as it may, I think I should be able to mod you down as "Bitching About Use of 'Hacker'". Give it up already.

Re:Don't you mean "Cracker" (1)

neophytepwner (992971) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081613)

I think someone was pretty stupid to let Gary McKinnon remotely control their computer, or it was allowed for some reason. Anyway this is not the kind of guy you want to put away, if anything hire him. Obviously he shows how vulnerable our security is, it might be good to take a hint.

Re:Don't you mean "Cracker" (1)

gbobeck (926553) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081725)

Isn't this place nerdy enough not to fall into calling crackers hackers?

I just call the guy an "Asshole". Makes everything so much easier.

Re:Don't you mean "Cracker" (1)

racyrefinedraj (981243) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082265)

This seems like a reasonable compromise.

Re:Don't you mean "Cracker" (1)

DaveAtFraud (460127) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081811)

Yeah, but since he's British it would have been calling him a "biscuit" which would have just gotten everybody confused.

The original usage of "hacker" (circa late 1970s) was someone who was *unskilled* at programming. Hacking at a program meant making random changes with little understanding of the problem until something approaching the correct answer appeared (usually a futile approach).

Cheers,
Dave

Lol. (2, Informative)

msimm (580077) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081931)

I can see from your member number how you would have missed that discussion. I think everyone finally got tired of pointing it out. The editors and much of the newer members fit, lets say, a wider interpretation of the profile you might expect. Slashdot has gotten big. It's still fun, but don't expect it to be too rootsy. More like techsploitation. Like The Register, only without the witty write-ups but much funnier comments (trolls, idiots as well as the good ones).

Still, usually a good laugh to be found.

Re:Don't you mean "Cracker" (1)

nacturation (646836) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082141)

Indeed, and whatever happened to "horseless carriage"? Bring that back, dammit!
 

Re:Don't you mean "Cracker" (1)

andy314159pi (787550) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082239)

Oh, good sir, I do believe you are referring to a motor car !

Wins Right? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20081383)

For some reason, I thought rights were something you have, not something you earn.

Don't worry. (4, Funny)

LaminatorX (410794) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081603)

Since the rest of the world has nothing but respect for the integrity of our justice system and rule of law, the Lords should honor our extradition request and send him on presently.

(...and if not, we'll just grab him and stash him someplace, forever.)

The Law Lords (5, Informative)

flyingfsck (986395) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081609)

is not the same thing as the House of Lords. The Law Lords is the highest court in the British Commonwealth.

Re:The Law Lords (5, Funny)

Marty200 (170963) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081691)

is not the same thing as the House of Lords. The Law Lords is the highest court in the British Commonwealth.

So where do the time lords fit into that hierarchy?

Re:The Law Lords (5, Funny)

nacturation (646836) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082119)

So where do the time lords fit into that hierarchy?
Go down the hall and it's the fourth dimension on the right.
 

Re:The Law Lords (1)

JonathanR (852748) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082465)

Same level as any of the Overlords?

Re:The Law Lords (1)

Petrushka (815171) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082301)

That is incorrect. The House of Lords has, amongst its other functions, a judicial function as the highest court in the land; the Law Lords (who are members of the House of Lords) are the people who perform that function.

Re:The Law Lords (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20082617)

And he hasn't won the right, either. As long as you keep appealing, you will end up at the Law Lords. Their say, however, is final.

Plea Bargain (4, Insightful)

BrookHarty (9119) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081829)

I thought it was because the UK doesn't have a Plea bargain agreement system, it would break UK law.
So the US basically said accept our plea or end up in prison for life. I think thats where the human rights issue also comes in.

One of the biggest problems with US law is the plea bargain system, thats why the laws are so horrible, it makes people want to bargain instead of going to court. Its not to punish people, its to keep everyone out of jury trials.

Hell, if everyone went to a trial for everything, could you imagine the crippling effect it would have on the courts? Everyone citizen would have to pull multiple jury trails to keep up with it.

Whatcha find ? (1)

Joebert (946227) | more than 7 years ago | (#20081985)

I bet the only reason this is happening is because the Lords think he found somthing out & they want to know what that is.

Let us in & we'll make sure you stay here, type stuff.

extradition (2, Interesting)

cycoj (1010923) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082025)

I'm surprised that this is even possible. Germanys constitution forbids the extradition of German citizens I actually thought it was the same for the UK. Well guess I was wrong.

Is there anything we can do to help? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20082027)

Is there anything we (Americans) can do to help him fight extradition? I believe that what he did was wrong, but he is tried here he is likely to get a sentence which violates my sense of justice. He should not be extradited, and he probably has suffered enough at this point that I don't feel like it would be justice to punish him any further.

Oh, and if he does get extradited, one thing we (Americans) can and should do is make a point of serving on juries. You never know what kind of case you're going to get. You could be sitting on this guy's jury some day.

Poodle (4, Insightful)

giorgosts (920092) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082429)

Britain is America's poodle. This guy, for all intends and purposes, has to be tried in the UK, by the British system. Does the USA extradite American nationals to the UK? Do they extradite them e.g. to Italy, where several CIA agents have been sentenced (in absentia) for conspiracy?

Hyperbole Hack (1)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 7 years ago | (#20082521)

Gary McKinnon, the UK-based ex-systems administrator accused of conducting the biggest military hack of all time...
I would think... maybe... Titan Rain might trump McKinnon's efforts. But hey - I know there's a long tradition in journalism. The subject of your "hacker" article is always a wunderkin uber-hacker responsible for the absolute pinnacle in hacking history. Always.
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