- Tram Ho
10 hackers are rated by the security community as the most notorious in the world, their “trophies” in the past are “illustrious” and now how do they live?
1. Kevin Mitnick
The US Department of Justice considers Kevin Mitnick (SN 1963, nicknamed The Condor – Falcon, The Darkside Hacker) as “the most wanted computer crime in US history”. This hacker story is “so great” that it becomes the basis of the movie “Track Down” (2000).
After serving a year in prison for hacking into Digital Equipment’s computer network, Mitnick was released from prison but served for 3 years. Near the end of his third year of probation, Mitnick fled and continued his two-and-a-half-year cyberattack, which successfully penetrated the defense alert system and stole American corporate secrets, including The vital data of Sun Microsystems and Motorola.
In the end, Mitnick was arrested again and sentenced to 5 years in prison. After serving his term, this notorious hacker became a cyber security consultant and speaker. Mitnick now runs a security consulting firm called Mitnick Security Consulting. He is also the hacking director of security training company KnowBe4, a member of the advisory board of Zimperium (the firm that develops mobile phone intrusion systems).
2. Jonathan James
The story of Jonathan James (1983-2008), famous for the external title “c0mrade”, is a sad story. He became a hacker at a young age, successfully broke into computer networks of a number of government agencies and businesses and then went to jail while still a minor.
James was the first US minor to be jailed for cyber crime – committing his first offense at age 15 and sentenced to prison at 16.
James attacked the NASA system (US Space Agency), downloading the $ 1.7 million source code to find out how ISS (International Space Station) works. NASA had to shut down the system during 3 weeks to investigate the intrusion, causing an additional loss of 41,000 USD.
In 2007, a number of well-known companies were hacked, the personal information and credit of millions of customers was leaked. Despite denying he was involved in cyber attacks, James was investigated. In 2008, this hacker killed himself with a gun. It is said that James lost faith in justice, did not want to be charged with a crime he did not commit.
Jonathan James. Photo: Menos Fios.
3. Albert Gonzales
Albert Gonzalez (SN 1981) began the “career” of hackers as a hacker leader named ShadowCrew. In addition to stealing and selling credit card numbers, ShadowCrew also fakes passports, health insurance cards and birth certificates for identity theft activities.
Gonzalez collected more than 170 million credit and ATM card numbers within 2 years. He then broke into the database of department store TJX and payment processor Heartland Payment Systems, stealing all the credit cards they stored.
Gonzalez was sentenced to 20 years in prison (served 2 times and 20 years in prison). This US hacker born in Cuba will be released in 2025.
Kevin Poulsen (SN 1965), nicknamed “Dark Dante” (Dark Dante), was called by the US press “Hannibal Lecter computer crime”. Once he hacked the phone line of a radio station, turning himself into a winning caller to win a brand new Porsche.
Poulsen is on the FBI’s wanted list after hacking certain government systems and stealing wiretapping information. In the end, he was arrested at a supermarket, sentenced to 51 months in prison and had to pay $ 56,000.
After escaping from prison in 1995, Poulsen changed his lifestyle and became a journalist (now editor of Wired technology newspaper. In 2006, the former hacker also helped law enforcement agencies identify 744 sex offenses on Now, Poulsen is often invited to talk about technology with a “profit” of $ 15,000-20,000.
5. Gary McKinnon
Gary McKinnon (SN 1966, British) has the nickname “Solo” on the internet, notorious for coordinating the biggest military computer network attack of all time.
For 13 months from February 2001 to March 2002, McKinnon illegally accessed 97 computers of the US Army and NASA. He said he was only looking for information on free, clean energy and concealing UFOs (unidentified flying objects – UFOs). But according to US authorities, McKinnon deleted some important files and made more than 300 computers inoperable, causing more than $ 700,000 in damage.
Originating in Scotland and operating outside the United Kingdom, McKinnon avoided US authorities until 2005 when he faced extradition. After many legal procedures, in October 2012, Interior Minister Theresa May (later becoming prime minister and recently resigned) did not agree to extradition to the US on the grounds that this hacker was “seriously ill” and extradition “is incompatible with human rights (by McKinnon).
Source : GenK