Romanian indicted after NASA, navy computers hacked

Romanian indicted after NASA, navy computers hacked
Romanian indicted after NASA, navy computers hacked 

The Associated Press 
December 1, 2006 

A Romanian national was indicted on charges of hacking into more than 
150 U.S. government computers, causing disruptions that cost NASA, the 
Energy Department and the navy nearly $1.5 million US.

The federal indictment charges Victor Faur, 26, of Arad, Romania, with 
nine counts of computer intrusion and one count of conspiracy.

He faces up to 54 years in prison if convicted on all counts, said Thom 
Mrozek, spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Faur was being prosecuted by authorities in Romania on separate computer 
hacking charges, Mrozek said Thursday, and will be brought to Los 
Angeles upon resolution of that case. It was not known whether Faur had 
retained a lawyer in the United States.

The U.S. government alleges Faur was the leader of a hacking group 
called "WhiteHat Team," whose main goal was to break into U.S. 
government computers because they are some of the most secure in the 

After hacking into and taking control of the computers, Faur programmed 
them to operate as chat rooms so he could communicate with other 
WhiteHat members, Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian Hoffstadt said.

During the break-ins, Faur searched for passwords that WhiteHat members 
could use to gain unauthorized access to other computers, Hoffstadt 

The compromised computers were used to collect, store and analyze 
scientific data  including data from spacecraft in orbit and deep space  
and to evaluate new technologies.

The machines were located at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena; 
Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.; Sandia National 
Laboratory in Albuquerque, N.M.; and the U.S. Naval Observatory in 
Washington, D.C.

Copyright - The Canadian Press, 2006

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