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#359155 - 11/26/09 03:31 PM Should computer hacking be an offence?  
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,046
Peter Jones Offline
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Peter Jones  Offline
For hacking into supposedly US Government secure systems, Gary McKinnon is due to face serious criminal charges. Seems to me that they were negligent in having inadequate systems that could be hacked, and rather than prosecuting him they should thank him for exposing their weaknesses and maybe even employ him to help sort them out.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/new...on-says-he-cannot-block-extradition.html

#359158 - 11/26/09 04:21 PM Re: Should computer hacking be an offence? [Re: Peter Jones]  
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 8,874
seashell Offline
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seashell  Offline
If someone broke into your house and messed with your stuff, would you consider yourself negligent and then hire the break-in artist to help you for exposing the weakness in your home security system, then employ him to help you improve upon it?


A fish and a bird can fall in love, but where will they build their nest?

#359161 - 11/26/09 04:42 PM Re: Should computer hacking be an offence? [Re: seashell]  
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,046
Peter Jones Offline
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Peter Jones  Offline
I don't think that's the same thing at all. The hacker hasn't entered or attempted to enter any Government premises. He's merely seen what is being transmitted over the internet and has found a way to view it.

It's hard to think of a parallel, but how about this? If I set up a webcam in my house and stream the video via the internet to someone else, intending the transmission to be private and not viewable to anyone else, what grounds do I have for complaining if someone else discovers my video stream and watches it?

#359162 - 11/26/09 04:51 PM Re: Should computer hacking be an offence? [Re: Peter Jones]  
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,980
ragman Offline
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ragman  Offline
Peter, With computers being used for billions of dollars in financial transactions, for storage of private medical data, for defense of countries and countless other serious reasons it is in the best interest of everyone that hacking into computers be an illegal act.

I know that some of this is only mischief but some is much more serious.


Jim
Somewhere on a beach in Belize
#359163 - 11/26/09 04:59 PM Re: Should computer hacking be an offence? [Re: ragman]  
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,046
Peter Jones Offline
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Peter Jones  Offline
Maybe, but making it illegal doesn't prevent it. Far better to put the onus on the systems people to make it unhackable. In Britain the present government is trying to create ever larger and more-emcompassing databases of private information on people, then when something goes wrong and data gets out the government just says it was the result of a criminal act. Not good enough - they're using that as an excuse to evade their responsibilities to safeguard the data properly.

#359164 - 11/26/09 05:04 PM Re: Should computer hacking be an offence? [Re: Peter Jones]  
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,980
ragman Offline
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ragman  Offline
Technology is moving fast but I still think that it is like saying that the bank should have had better security measures in place and we will not prosecute the bank robber. Who by the way in this day and age may not even have to enter the bank. Just my take on it.


Jim
Somewhere on a beach in Belize
#359167 - 11/26/09 05:21 PM Re: Should computer hacking be an offence? [Re: ragman]  
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 8,874
seashell Offline
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seashell  Offline
Thanks ragman, a bank robber was going to be my next parallel.


A fish and a bird can fall in love, but where will they build their nest?

#359168 - 11/26/09 05:28 PM Re: Should computer hacking be an offence? [Re: seashell]  
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 8,874
seashell Offline
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seashell  Offline
I'll be interested to see if our new message board friend AC weighs in on this issue.


A fish and a bird can fall in love, but where will they build their nest?

#359170 - 11/26/09 07:08 PM Re: Should computer hacking be an offence? [Re: seashell]  
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,416
SimonB Offline
SimonB  Offline
Just because I left my door open doesn't make it legal for you to walk in look around and take whatever you want.

The way you have it Peter, I could come by and hook up a sniffer to your Internet line and have a look at everything inbound and outbound.

Just in case sniffer means nothing to you: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Packet_analyzer

#359172 - 11/26/09 07:57 PM Re: Should computer hacking be an offence? [Re: SimonB]  
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,046
Peter Jones Offline
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Peter Jones  Offline
Oh, I know what that is, Simon. Just why I always use a secure VPN for anything remotely confidential.

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