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NEWS: Scot accused of hacking US defence systems faces extradition

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posted on Apr, 12 2006 @ 01:25 PM
A man from Glasgow is being accused for hacking 97 US government over one year period and now could face extradition and maybe 60 years in jail if founded guilty.
Mr McKinnon "hobby" was deleting operating system files and logs from computers at US Naval Weapons Station.
A man born in Glasgow and accused of hacking into the most sophisticated IT systems on the planet and paralysing a US naval base soon after the September 11 attacks could face extradition and 60 years in prison if a court decision goes against him today.
Gary McKinnon, 40, is accused of breaking into American defence computers but is contesting an attempt to extradite him, fearing he could be branded a terrorist and face indefinite incarceration.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

I mean somebody, just another guy decides to play a game with US difense sistem and the whole thing falls apart as it was a internet caffe network? I can't belive that and especialy after 9/11. If an average person not even known as a hacker or a computer gig causes a demage of over 500 G's what can happen if the attack comes from computer genius or excperienced hackers. Is the US difense system so fragile and so easy to access in?

[edit on 12-4-2006 by DontTreadOnMe]

posted on Apr, 12 2006 @ 06:27 PM
It appears that the extradition of McKinnon for the moment is not gonna happen.

Gary McKinnon, the U.K. citizen accused of hacking into computer systems run by NASA and the U.S. military, will not be extradited across the Atlantic to face trial unless the U.S. can guarantee he won't be treated as a terrorist.

At a hearing at Bow Street Magistrates' Court on Wednesday, McKinnon's lawyers claimed that he could be detained indefinitely by the U.S. authorities. McKinnon is charged with illegally accessing 97 U.S. government computers and causing $700,000 worth of damage over a 12-month period starting in Feb. 2001.

Follow the link: C|Net

[edit on 12-4-2006 by Telos]

posted on Apr, 12 2006 @ 07:06 PM
I wonder also, what kind of system we have that somebody from another country can hacked with not problem.

Now he did something that was illegal but extradited him to the US?

He will end up in Giztmo as a terrorist.

Doesn't his country has laws that can be applied also?

Unless he has dual citizenship.

posted on Apr, 12 2006 @ 07:32 PM
I'm a little bit out of topic but since I'm the poster of this news I want to emphasize something. English is my second language and I apologize to everybody if my post contains errors in grammar and writing style.

Thank You

posted on Apr, 12 2006 @ 07:52 PM
Found something else in regards of the security. Check this out:

Feds create new post of cybersecurity czar A new cybersecurity czar will join the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's ranks, Secretary Michael Chertoff announced on Wednesday. The assistant secretary for cybersecurity and telecommunications will be "responsible for identifying and assessing the

- - - - - - - - - British hacker shines light on poor IT security Gary McKinnon tells ZDNet UK about alarming lapses in IT security, which could be a key factor behind US calls to extradite him to face charges of hacking US Army, Navy, Air Force and NASA computers. The British hacker facing extradition to the US on charges of hacking and causing damage to US defence sites has highlighted poor security as a major factor in his ability to wander through the IT systems of some key defence establishments. Alleged hacker: U.S. defense sites poorly secured Gary McKinnon: Scapegoat or public enemy?

- - - - - - - - - - Kansan admits to child porn collection Marlon K. Woodward secretly collected pictures in his computer of young children having sex. Then his brother took the machine to a pawn shop. The pawn brokers found the images and alerted authorities. In November, Woodward was among 16 people across Kansas charged by the U.S. Attorney's office with possessing or trafficking in child pornography. Tuesday, Woodward's case ended up like most of the 16: with a guilty plea.

- - - - - - - - - - Child porn reportedly found on computer of ex-Henry coroner The Henry County coroner who resigned amid charges that he propositioned women for sex now faces allegations that child pornography has been found on his computer. Muncie police investigators said they found several images of child pornography on a computer owned by Robert Scott Troxell, the former coroner. - - - - - -

- - - - Man Sent Child Porn Over Internet An 18-year-old Beech Grove man faces charges in Texas and Indiana that he sent child pornography over the Internet. Police told RTV6 he thought he was talking to a young girl in an online chat room. But that "young girl" was really an undercover detective. - - - - - - - - - -

EU antitrust officials raid Intel European regulators raided the offices of Intel and a number of PC-related companies early Tuesday as part of an antitrust investigation into the chip giant. As part of the dawn raid, European Commission officials and national competition authorities in Milan, Italy; Munich, Germany; Madrid, Spain; and Swindon, England, descended on several Intel offices, a Commission representative said and an Intel representative confirmed. The officials also visited a number of companies that manufacture or sell computers. - - - - - - - - - -

Bush picks tech lawyer for security post President Bush said Wednesday that he has chosen Stewart Baker, one of Washington's most influential technology lawyers, to be assistant secretary of homeland security for policy. Baker's new job, which requires Senate confirmation, would place him in the prominent position of shaping policy on topics from data mining to the department's planning for "what if" scenarios far off in the future. It also could include evaluating existing department functions for efficiency and creating a national strategy to prevent terrorists from entering the United States. - - - - - - - - - -

Penalty plea on cyber criminals Tougher sentences are needed to make sure computer crime is treated seriously by courts and prosecutors, said an MP as he proposed new laws. Labour's Tom Harris wants there to be a specific law forbidding "denial of service attacks" where floods of emails are used to wreck computer systems.

Tougher cybercrime sentences demanded Tom Harris MP wants convicted hackers to face up to ten years behind bars. A Labour MP is attempting to raise the maximum sentences that can be handed down on UK citizens who are convicted of hacking and DoS attacks. Tom Harris, MP for Glasgow South, introduced a bill on Tuesday to update the Computer Misuse Act.

Leave hacker scum to rot, says MP - - - - -

- - - - - Enhanced In-Air Internet Surveillance Sought Federal law enforcement agencies are seeking enhanced surveillance powers over Internet service on airplanes, an effort to shape an emerging technology to meet the government's concerns about terrorism. Authorities want the ability to intercept, block or divert e-mail or other online communication to and from airplanes after obtaining a court order. Internet providers would have to allow government monitoring within 10 minutes of a court order being granted, be able to electronically identify users by their seat numbers and be required to collect and store records of the communications for 24 hours.

- - - - - - - - - - BofA adds new online security Stung by recent high-profile security breaches, Bank of America Corp. is rolling out a new online banking security system aimed at making it harder for cyberthieves to crack customer accounts. "We definitely want to lead the industry by making online banking more secure," Bank of America e-commerce executive Sanjay Gupta said. "Right now, more than 50 percent of (banking) transactions take place online."

- - - - - - - - - - Commercial piracy in Ukraine The international recording industry today welcomed the adoption by Ukraine of a landmark CD plant law that is a decisive step in the fight against the country's unacceptably high levels of piracy. Ukraine's Parliament Verkhovna Rada) passed the long-awaited Bill of amendments to Ukraine's Law on Laser-readable Discs which is essential to tackle ongoing pirate CD production and illegal exports from Ukraine. - - - - - - - - - -

Flaws could open systems to attack Two serious security flaws in a technology widely used for network authentication could expose a swath of software products to hacker attack, experts have warned. The flaws could allow an online intruder to crash or gain access to computers running Kerberos, a freely available authentication technology that was developed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. - - - - - - - - - -

Microsoft patches IE, Word, Windows Microsoft Corp. has released three software updates that patch critical security flaws in its products, including a patch for an Internet Explorer vulnerability first reported last week. The company also released patches for Microsoft Word and for a feature of the Windows operating system used by a number of applications. Microsoft Warns Hackers Are Actively Exploiting Windows XP Flaws - - - - - - - -

- - Major Oracle Patch Covers Enterprise Products, Database Server Oracle has released a set of 49 patches that addresses new flaws in multiple versions of its Database Server, Application Server, Collaboration Suite, E-Business and Applications, and Enterprise Manager products. The patches are available on OTN (the Oracle Technology Network). The product flaws vary in terms of exploitability. Oracle Database has 12 flaws, including a flaw in Database 10g's Oracle OLAP (online analytical processing) that requires Database privilege­execute on olapsys­but which, according to Oracle's posting, is both easily accessible and would have a wide impact. - - - - - - - - - -

Firefox patch fixes 12 security flaws Firefox users were today urged to upgrade to the latest version of the browser which is designed to be more stable and fixes 12 security flaws. The patches cover problems with Javascript handling and offer protection against some remote code execution, for example when malicious code is inserted into a spoofed web page.

- - - - - - - - - - Could blogging spread computer worms? Could RSS feeds become a conduit for the transmission of computer worms? Security experts are at odds over the possibility. Those who play down the threat point to the fact that no virus has ever used the propagation technique while others say it's only when a network reaches critical mass (as in the case of instant message and file sharing networks) that malware threats show their ugly head. - - - - - - - - - -

Phlooding attack could leave enterprises high and dry You've got to hand it to the IT security industry for its ability to coin new and impressive sounding terms for security threats. Hot on the hells of WiPhishing and Evil Twins comes the latest buzz word for wireless Lan security: phlooding. Phlooding involves a "group of simultaneous but geographically distributed attacks that targets a business's authentication or network log-in structure, with the goal of overloading its central authentication server," according to wireless security firm AirMagnet, which coined the term. - -

- - - - - - - - Document security? Tell me another joke Hardly a week goes by without a report of confidential information leaking from a supposedly secure document. Breaches affecting both the public and private sectors are constantly making the news. - - - - - - - - - -

Police blogger files complaint after losing job A police officer who claims he was fired because a Web site he operates criticizes New York City's police department--often in crude language--has filed a complaint with the New York State Division of Human Rights. Edward R. Polstein's complaint asserts that he was the victim of retaliation and reverse discrimination. He was fired after he reneged on a retirement deal struck last fall, according to the police department.

posted on Apr, 12 2006 @ 11:42 PM
McKinnon was looking for information regardin UFO-s and Aliens.

Mr McKinnon got his first computer when he was 14 years old, and has been a hobbyist ever since. He left school at 17, and became a hairdresser. But, in the early 1990s, some friends convinced him to get a qualification in computers. After completing a course, he started doing contract work in the computing field.

By the late 1990s, Mr McKinnon decided to use his hacking skills to do what he calls "research" on an issue he firmly believes in. Mr McKinnon told the BBC that he is convinced that the United States government is withholding critical information about Unidentified Flying Objects.

"It wasn't just an interest in little green men and flying saucers," said Mr McKinnon. "I believe that there are spacecraft, or there have been craft, flying around that the public doesn't know about."

Mr McKinnon further explained that he believes the US military has reverse engineered an anti-gravity propulsion system from recovered alien spacecraft, and that this propulsion system is being kept a secret.

In that sense, Mr McKinnon said he sees his own hacking as "humanitarian." He said he only wanted to find evidence of a UFO cover-up and expose it. He called the alleged anti-gravity propulsion system "extra-terrestrial technology we should have access to".

I wanted to find out why this is being kept a secret when it could be put to good use," he said in the BBC interview last year.

Gary McKinnon's search turned into an obsession, an addiction. As he probed high-level computer systems in the United States, his life in Britain fell apart. He lost his job, and his girlfriend dumped him. Friends told him to stop hacking, but to no avail.

"I'd stopped washing at one point. I wasn't looking after myself. I wasn't eating properly. I was sitting around the house in my dressing gown, doing this all night."

posted on Apr, 13 2006 @ 12:16 AM
That makes no sense whatsoever. He was looking for alien/UFO information, but was going into weapons sight computers and erasing the operating system?
How is that "humanitarian hacking"? That's just being dumb and he SHOULD be thrown in jail for a long time.

posted on Apr, 13 2006 @ 12:24 AM
He obviously wasnt very good as he was caught
but this does say something about the US military. YOU NEED TO UPGRADE and pay people to do their jobs instead of outsourcing the jobs. Technology changes and what might of been fine for 1985 is not fine for 2006. stop thinking you are fine and the IT specialists dont know their job.

What if this had been say...a computer that controlled nuclear weapons? or one that controlled NORAAD.

stop being a bunch of tight asses!

posted on Apr, 13 2006 @ 12:41 AM
He did not delete any operating system. He signed in on a basic I.D. floating around in a network and saw stuff that he shouldn't have. Top Secret stuff. He didn't delete any operating system, he downloaded some of the information and the guy is regarded as an embarressment to the U.S. Why? Because they don't even have proper security systems to hide their secrets. Apparently he caused hundreds of millions of damage because he accessed some files he shouldn't. Something stinks.

posted on Apr, 13 2006 @ 12:52 AM

One allegation relates to Mr McKinnon deleting operating system files and logs from computers at US Naval Weapons Station Earle after the September 11 attacks, rendering the base's entire network of more than 300 computers inoperable.

I suppose that they just made this charge up then?

posted on Apr, 13 2006 @ 03:23 AM
Yup. He "claims" that he did no vandalism whatsover. He may be lying, so we'll see how solid this evidence is.

posted on Apr, 16 2006 @ 06:34 AM
Gary mckinnon was motivated to hack into the pentagon because he believed that he would find out the truth about 911.He believed the US government were responsible(and foolishly believed that they would keep computer records of their involement).
He found nothing to back up his claims on 911,BUT he cliams to have found out about a secret space program,and a wing of the military called "non terrestrial officers."
Of course,hes been discredited a pot smoking loner and the us govt. have claimed that he caused hundreds of thousands of damage.....Jeez,come on guys...what are you paying your network technicians???How much does it cost to change a password you amatuers.
I think he did find secret information,about space based military manouvers,which the us govt. want to keep secret at all he will be imprisoned in one of your fine correctional facilities,probably for life.The way the guy has been discredited by our UK media is certainly noteworthy.People in high places have used thier influence to make this man seem insane,dangerous et cetera.
The BBC interviewed him before all the negative tabloid dumbed down garbage rags got hold of the story(and maybe before they were told to make him look like a wacko).
Heres the link to the BBC audio interveiw:

Well worth listening to folks.

posted on Apr, 17 2006 @ 02:10 AM
We should have already said we wont try him as a terrorist and get him extradited over here ASAP. Then we can actually try him for something, instead of being stuck in the stagnant arena of international politics and laws. And “humanitarian hacking”? Yeah right. I’d like for him to face some "humanitarian punishment"!

posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 11:38 PM
Basically he is getting what he asked for. The damage bit was just wrong, looking is relatevily ok espically as there are many things the public should know about.
That said what if he had done it to the governments I.D card register?
Though these cards arn't forced on U.K passport renewers till 2008; anybody who did do harm to this system would probably be considerd a national hero (I for one).

posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 11:59 PM
scumbag hacked the pcs during 9/11. Let him rot for all I care. The UFO thing is just cover.

[edit on 20-4-2006 by Nakash]

posted on Apr, 20 2006 @ 07:03 AM
I must ask how the hell is it possible to shutdown hundreds of computers using a crappy computer with Windows? Is it even possible to shutdown a network of computers I must ask? It sounds impossible to me, and I doubt that even the best hacker can do it.
*NOTE* Gary MacKinnon isn't even a good hacker by his own admission. He thinks of himself, more of a fisher.

posted on Apr, 20 2006 @ 07:25 AM
I'd also have to consider him a pretty bad hacker. I read an interview with this guy when had hacked into nasa computer he claimed he came across pictures of cigar shaped craft with domed like strutures on the top, bottom and both sides of the craft. And that while in a military data base he came across a list of fleet to fleet personel transfers. When cross-referenced with navy ships he says they didn't match and here's the kicker the document was entitled Non-Terrastrial officers. I'm assuming that means people from earth just not on earth. By his own admission he was doing this for years and he never once hit print screen

posted on May, 2 2006 @ 05:11 AM

Originally posted by MacDonagh
I must ask how the hell is it possible to shutdown hundreds of computers using a crappy computer with Windows? Is it even possible to shutdown a network of computers I must ask? It sounds impossible to me, and I doubt that even the best hacker can do it.
*NOTE* Gary MacKinnon isn't even a good hacker by his own admission. He thinks of himself, more of a fisher.

Over a large network its very easy to do via remote. They are attached through hundreds of servers all over the place. You have to have a way to access them all remotely for updates and maintenance.A Network admin can apply updates or software to hundreds of computers at one time using remote access. Create users, Change Network or group Policies etc etc. Much like here on ATS the owners live in several places and can access their servers throught the net and Im sure can shutdown or restart their server from their home computer, and retrieve or send files up.

Ever since I have been around BBS's in the 80's kids have been hacking military computers.I remember one incident in 1989 where about 20 kids got caught logging into one unsecure Naval computer at a clip. You would have figured by now they would stay ahead of the game and have better security. Mckinnon said there were hundreds of people on at the same time as he was, with ip's tracing from China, N.Korea, Russia and elsewhere. I believe it.


posted on May, 2 2006 @ 05:33 AM
Now this is interesting, although I suppose not easily verifiable and not terribly conclusive:

From the April 22nd Financial Times:

A bit of a sci-fi fan, he was looking for evidence of secret military technologies he thought the US might be developing, such as anti-gravity technology, as well as for evidence of UFOs.

Had he found definitive proof, he would simply have revealed details to the public. "I never thought of it as hacking. I called it research at the time."

He never did find anything about anti-gravity but he did stumble on intriguing details on extra-terrestrial activity. Computers in Building 8 of the Johnson Space Center, for example, contained satellite pictures showing what looked like alien space ships. But Mr McKinnon never saw these as closely as he would have liked.

Before he could download them fully, someone on the space center computer system noticed the unauthorised access on the network and cut the connection.

Security at the space center was subsequently tightened to the extent that Mr McKinnon could not re-enter. He did, however, find lists on other computer systems that referred to "non-terrestrial officers" and lists of ships that did not correspond to anything the US had in the air or on the seas - leading Mr McKinnon to suspect the existence of a secret space army.

posted on May, 15 2006 @ 03:54 PM
I finally found a interview of him done by BBC


Computer Hacker Fears "UFO Cover-Up"

In 2002, Gary McKinnon was arrested by the UK's national high-tech crime unit, after being accused of hacking into Nasa and the US military computer networks.

He says he spent two years looking for photographic evidence of alien spacecraft and advanced power technology.

America now wants to put him on trial, and if tried there he could face 60 years behind bars.

Banned from using the internet, Gary spoke to Click presenter Spencer Kelly to tell his side of the story, ahead of his extradition hearing that was on Wednesday, May 10.

Spencer Kelly: Here's your list of charges: you hacked into the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, the Department of Defense, and Nasa, amongst other things. Why?

Gary McKinnon: I was in search of suppressed technology, laughingly referred to as UFO technology. I think it's the biggest kept secret in the world because of its comic value, but it's a very important thing.

Old-age pensioners can't pay their fuel bills, countries are invaded to award oil contracts to the West, and meanwhile secretive parts of the secret government are sitting on suppressed technology for free energy.

SK: How did you go about trying to find the stuff you were looking for in Nasa, in the Department of Defense?

GM: Unlike the press would have you believe, it wasn't very clever. I searched for blank passwords, I wrote a tiny Perl script that tied together other people's programs that search for blank passwords, so you could scan 65,000 machines in just over eight minutes.

SK: So you're saying that you found computers which had a high-ranking status, administrator status, which hadn't had their passwords set - they were still set to default?

GM: Yes, precisely.

SK: Were you the only hacker to make it past the slightly lower-than-expected lines of defence?

GM: Yes, exactly, there were no lines of defence. There was a permanent tenancy of foreign hackers. You could run a command when you were on the machine that showed connections from all over the world, check the IP address to see if it was another military base or whatever, and it wasn't.

The General Accounting Office in America has again published another damning report saying that federal security is very, very poor.

SK: Over what kind of period were you hacking into these computers? Was it a one-time only, or for the course of a week?

GM: Oh no, it was a couple of years.

SK: And you went unnoticed for a couple of years?

GM: Oh yes. I used to be careful about the hours.

SK: So you would log on in the middle of the night, say?

GM: Yes, I'd always be juggling different time zones. Doing it at night time there's hopefully not many people around. But there was one occasion when a network engineer saw me and actually questioned me and we actually talked to each other via WordPad, which was very, very strange.

SK: So what did he say? And what did you say?

GM: He said "What are you doing?" which was a bit shocking. I told him I was from Military Computer Security, which he fully believed.

SK: Did you find what you were looking for?

GM: Yes.

SK: Tell us about it.

GM: There was a group called the Disclosure Project. They published a book which had 400 expert witnesses ranging from civilian air traffic controllers, through military radar operators, right up to the chaps who were responsible for whether or not to launch nuclear missiles.

They are some very credible, relied upon people, all saying yes, there is UFO technology, there's anti-gravity, there's free energy, and it's extra-terrestrial in origin, and we've captured spacecraft and reverse-engineered it.

SK: What did you find inside Nasa?

GM: One of these people was a Nasa photographic expert, and she said that in building eight of Johnson Space Centre they regularly airbrushed out images of UFOs from the high-resolution satellite imaging. What she said was there was there: there were folders called "filtered" and "unfiltered", "processed" and "raw", something like that.

I got one picture out of the folder, and bearing in mind this is a 56k dial-up, so a very slow internet connection, in dial-up days, using the remote control programme I turned the colour down to 4bit colour and the screen resolution really, really low, and even then the picture was still juddering as it came onto the screen.

But what came on to the screen was amazing. It was a culmination of all my efforts. It was a picture of something that definitely wasn't man-made.

It was above the Earth's hemisphere. It kind of looked like a satellite. It was cigar-shaped and had geodesic domes above, below, to the left, the right and both ends of it, and although it was a low-resolution picture it was very close up.

This thing was hanging in space, the earth's hemisphere visible below it, and no rivets, no seams, none of the stuff associated with normal man-made manufacturing.

SK: Is it possible this is an artist's impression?

GM: I don't know... For me, it was more than a coincidence. This woman has said: "This is what happens, in this building, in this space centre". I went into that building, that space centre, and saw exactly that.

SK: Do you have a copy of this? It came down to your machine.

GM: No, the graphical remote viewer works frame by frame. It's a Java application, so there's nothing to save on your hard drive, or at least if it is, only one frame at a time.

SK: So did you get the one frame?

GM: No.

SK: What happened?

GM: Once I was cut off, my picture just disappeared.

SK: You were actually cut off the time you were downloading the picture?

GM: Yes, I saw the guy's hand move across.

SK: You acknowledge that what you did was against the law, it was wrong, don't you?

GM: Unauthorised access is against the law and it is wrong.

SK: What do you think is a suitable punishment for someone who did what you did?

GM: Firstly, because of what I was looking for, I think I was morally correct. Even though I regret it now, I think the free energy technology should be publicly available.

I want to be tried in my own country, under the Computer Misuse Act, and I want evidence brought forward, or at least want the Americans to have to provide evidence in order to extradite me, because I know there is no evidence of damage.

NASA told Click that it does not discuss computer security issues or legal matters. It denied it would ever manipulate images in order to deceive and said it had a policy of open and full disclosure, adding it had no direct evidence of extraterrestrial life.

Source: BBC

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