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January 2003

Examining infosec hackers of the past and how they affect cybersecurity laws

Banishing Hackers Ah, for our would-be digital outlaws, there may be a fate worst than the gulags and gallows. Norwegian prosecutors aren't recommending jail time for a teen convicted of distributing a DVD decryption script. Rather, they want him stripped of his computer. Jon Lech Johansen, 19, who wrote the DeCSS program that allows Linux users to play DVDs by cracking their security protections, may temporarily lose the privilege of surfing the highways and byways of the Internet until his probation passes. Prosecutors say such a sentence, and a hefty fine, is punishment enough. The prosecutors may have a point. Take away a hacker's computer and you essentially cut him off from his community. He'll have plenty of time to contemplate his black hat actions and, perhaps, reform his malicious ways. I guess we'll have to wait and see how Johansen turns out. Maybe he'll send us an e-mail when they allow him to plug back in. DMCA Fails Test If Shakespeare were writing about the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and the ...

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