Most famous Black Hat Hackers


This article is about Most famous Black Hat Hackers in this world.

1. Jonathan James:

James gained notoriety when he became the first juvenile to be sent to prison for hacking. He was sentenced at 16 years old. In an  anonymous PBS interview, he professes, “I was just looking around, playing around. What was fun for me was a challenge to see what I  could pull off.”

James’s major intrusions targeted high-profile organizations. He installed a backdoor into a Defense Threat Reduction Agency server. The  DTRA is an agency of the Department of Defense charged with reducing the threat to the U.S. and its allies from nuclear, biological,  chemical, conventional and special weapons. The backdoor he created enabled him to view sensitive emails and capture employee  usernames and passwords.

James also cracked into NASA computers, stealing software worth approximately $1.7 million. According to the Department of Justice, “The software supported the International Space Station’s physical environment, including control of the temperature and humidity within the living space.” NASA was forced to shut down its computer systems, ultimately racking up a $41,000 cost. James explained that he downloaded the code to supplement his studies on C programming, but contended, “The code itself was crappy . . . certainly not worth $1.7 million like they claimed.”

Given the extent of his intrusions, if James, also known as “c0mrade,” had been an adult he likely would have served at least 10 years. Instead, he was banned from recreational computer use and was slated to serve a six-month sentence under house arrest with probation. However, he served six months in prison for violation of parole. Today, James asserts that he’s learned his lesson and might start a computer security company.

2. Adrian Lamo:

Lamo’s claim to fame is his break-ins at major organizations like The New York Times and Microsoft. Dubbed the “homeless hacker,” he used  Internet connections at Kinko’s, coffee shops and libraries to do his intrusions. In a profile article, “He Hacks by Day, Squats by Night,” Lamo  reflects, “I have a laptop in Pittsburgh, a change of clothes in D.C. It kind of redefines the term multi-jurisdictional.”

Lamo’s intrusions consisted mainly of penetration testing, in which he found flaws in security, exploited them and then informed companies of  their shortcomings. His hits include Yahoo!, Bank of America, Citigroup and Cingular. When white hat hackers are hired by companies to do  penetration testing, it’s legal. What Lamo did is not.

When he broke into The New York Times’ intranet, things got serious. He added himself to a list of experts and viewed personal information on contributors, including Social Security numbers. Lamo also hacked into The Times’ LexisNexis account to research high-profile subject matter.

For his intrusion at The New York Times, Lamo was ordered to pay approximately $65,000 in restitution. He was also sentenced to six months of home confinement and two years of probation, which expired January 16, 2007. Lamo is currently working as an award-winning journalist and public speaker.

3. Kevin Mitnick:

A self-proclaimed “hacker poster boy,” Mitnick went through a highly publicized pursuit by authorities. His mischief was hyped by the  media but his actual offenses may be less notable than his notoriety suggests. The Department of Justice describes him as “the most  wanted computer criminal in United States history.” His exploits were detailed in two movies: Freedom Downtime and Takedown.

Mitnick had a bit of hacking experience before committing the offenses that made him famous. He started out exploiting the Los Angeles  bus punch card system to get free rides. Then, like Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, dabbled in phone phreaking. Although there were  numerous offenses, Mitnick was ultimately convicted for breaking into the Digital Equipment Corporation’s computer network and  stealing software.

Mitnick’s mischief got serious when he went on a two and a half year “coast-to-coast hacking spree.” The CNN article, “Legendary computer hacker released from prison,” explains that “he hacked into computers, stole corporate secrets, scrambled phone networks and broke into the national defense warning system.” He then hacked into computer expert and fellow hacker Tsutomu Shimomura’s home computer, which led to his undoing.

Today, Mitnick has been able to move past his role as a black hat hacker and become a productive member of society. He served five years, about 8 months of it in solitary confinement, and is now a computer security consultant, author and speaker.


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