Gary McKinnon fights extradition

By Derek Sooman on July 29, 2005, 6:47 AM
The man accused of the world's biggest hack is fighting extradition. Back in June Gary McKinnon, 39, of Wood Green, north London was released on bail by magistrates on charges of cracking into US military and NASA computers in 2001 and 2002. The systems he was accused of breaking into included NASA, the US Army, US Navy, Department of Defence, the US Air Force and the Pentagon. Earlier this month, McKinnon spoke out about his illegal hacking activities, highlighting poor security and simple curiosity as the reasons why he broke into the many computer systems he is claimed to have penetrated. His extradition hearing has been adjourned until October 18 so that his lawyers can arrange a defence.

McKinnon claims the damage he caused was minimal but U.S. authorities indicate costs of up to 370,000. It is claimed McKinnon 'owned' computers belonging to the army, navy, airforce, Nasa and the U.S. Department of Defense.

If convicted McKinnon could face up to 70 years in jail. Acting on behalf of the U.S. government Mark Summers claimed that McKinnon acted from his own computer in London and attempted to influence U.S. government policy by sending intimidating and coercive messages.

User Comments: 6

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smtkr said:
[quote]McKinnon 'owned' computers belonging to the army, navy, airforce, Nasa and the U.S. Department of Defense.[/quote]It should read "McKinnon [B]PWNED[/B] computers..."
Phantasm66 said:
Unfortunately, this guy is dead. It was always going to happen to the next big hacker after 9/11. Be prepared never to see this guy's sorry ass again....
Spike said:
I seem to recall the US claiming that the whole thing had cost them a sum far greater than the amount they are claiming now, just a few months ago.In terms of who I'm going to believe iong the cost of damages side of things, I don't think I favour the US version.
Phantasm66 said:
When someone gets charged with hacking, even if no damage was done, damage (with a price tag on it) is usually invented, to secure a conviction. Probably find he did no actual harm at all.
bbutterworth said:
Many hackers are much like other criminals who know the risks and implications of actually getting caught, at the same time understanding that what they are doing is probably or even definitely illegal. Once fingered, they cry about the injustice they have suffered. No pity here.
Phantasm66 said:
I think if you have cracked into the US Military, you are getting what you deserve. There are terrorists and stuff out there and breaking into these things is just not on, regardless of whether actual damage was caused or not.
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