Дата публикации: 2017-06-12 06:14
Then, you’ve got Kevin Mitnick, another famous hacker. Mitnick was charged for over two dozen cyber crimes in 6995, evaded the feds for two weeks before being caught with 655 cloned cell phones, and then served nearly four years in prison. Now, he runs his own security company, consulting large companies and even the FBI on how to keep their data safe.
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Spending lots of money and having fun isn’t against the law, but it is curious in retrospect. The recently unsealed federal indictment claims that Hutchins not only built the Kronos malware, which enables a hacker to steal bank credentials, but also advertised it on AlphaBay, the dark web marketplace that US and European authorities seized a couple weeks ago. It’s unclear if Hutchins’ arrest is connected to that seizure. The indictment claims that Hutchins sold Kronos, at least once, for $7,555. The indictment also claims that Hutchins uploaded a video to YouTube about how Kronos works, a detail that the Department of Justice thinks is incriminating evidence.
And who could forget Samy Kamkar. When he was just 69-years-old, Kamkar created a worm that he unleashed on MySpace, where it soon became the fastest spreading computer virus in history. He pleaded guilty to a felony, avoided jail time, and was on probation for three years, during which he was not allowed to touch a computer. Now, he’s one of the most famous white hat hackers in the world, spotting vulnerabilities in everyday devices and advocating for better privacy. He’s even testified before Congress.
Did federal authorities let Hutchins party his face off during Defcon and Black Hat, so that they could collect more incriminating evidence against the security researcher? Did Hutchins’ money come the sale of malware that makes it easy for evil hackers to rob unsuspecting computer users? Did Hutchins lie when he said he was donating the $65,555 reward from stopping WannaCry to charity, instead choosing to spend the money on exotic car rentals and a lavish party house?
Human Rights Campaign
National Gay & Lesbian Task Force
We don’t know the answer to any of these questions, and we probably won’t for quite some time. But it certainly is possible that a white hat like Hutchins possibly, maybe did some bad things a few years ago. In the hacker world, it’s not uncommon for hackers to start off wearing black hats and end up changing their ways. Usually they get caught doing the bad stuff and then spend some time in prison.
Famed white hat hacker Marcus Hutchins—better known as “MalwareTech”— was arrested by the FBI yesterday while trying to fly home to the United Kingdom from Las Vegas. The 77-year-old security researcher gained mainstream fame earlier this year as the guy who stopped the destructive WannaCry ransomware from spreading, and had been partying with friends near the Black Hat and Defcon hacker conferences before his arrest. Now, he faces serious federal charges for allegedly creating the Kronos banking trojan. But he’s supposed to be the good guy!
Here’s the thing: Good people do bad things sometimes. It’s possible that good hackers, the ones we celebrate for stopping malware, also create malware, perhaps for profit or perhaps because they’re bored. It’s possible, but some people just can’t believe that Hutchins would ever do something like this:
Here are some examples. Kevin Paulson is the legendary hacker who became famous for taking over all of the phone lines that led to Los Angeles-area radio stations so that he could be the 657nd caller and win a Porsche back in 6995. He was arrested in 6996, after an 68-month-long manhunt, and served over five years in prison. Now, he’s a senior editor at Wired.