TUCoPS :: Cyber Law :: hacker02.txt

Hackers busted - 7/17/85

UPI Domestic News Wire
Wednesday July 17, 1985
Update:  2
      More may be charged in ``hacker'' ring, prosecutor says 
	   NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. (UPI) _ More people may be charged with using 
home computers to make free long-distance calls and reportedly try to 
break into Pentagon computers, a prosecutor said Wednesday. 
	   Meanwhile, the executive director of the state chapter of the 
American Civil Liberties Union charged the Middlesex County Prosecutor's
Office with ``trampling'' on the rights of one of the seven youths
charged in the scheme Tuesday.
	   The youths used their computers and electronic ``bulletin boards''
to exchange information on computer codes, including some that would
cause communications satellites to ``change position'' and possibly 
interrupt intercontinental communications, Middlesex County Prosecutor
Alan Rockoff said.
	   ``Though it may sound like a copycat of (the movie) `WarGames,' 
things like this are happening in our society,'' Rockoff said, accusing 
the youths of obtaining thousands and ``possibly millions'' of dollars
in telephone and informational services.
	   A spokesman for American Telephone & Telegraph Co. said there was 
no indication that any of its satellites had been moved, or that even an
attempt to move them was made.
	   Assistant Prosecutor Frank Graves said investigators still had
``six more computers and 9 million floppy discs'' to look through.
	   ``We had 300 names in one computer and we charged seven,'' Graves 
said. ``We have no idea what's in the other computers and won't know for
a while.''
	   The youths, whose names were withheld because of their ages, are
charged with juvenile delinquency by reason of conspiracy to commit 
	   South Plainfield police detective George Green said four of the 
defendants operated electronic bulletin boards, which are used for the
exchange of legitimate information by hundreds of people. 
	   The youths also had a special code that provided illegal access to
restricted information, Green said, and only those who used these parts 
of the bulletin boards were arrested. 
	   Rockoff said the investigation began in April when postal officials 
informed the South Plainfield police that someone using a post office 
box under a fictitious name apparently had been using a computer to gain
illegal access to the computer of a Connecticut credit company. 
	   Rockoff turned over the results of the investigation to the Secret
Service since the bulletin boards contained telephone numbers in a
military defense communications system in the Defense Department, The 
New York Times reported Wednedsay.
	   Plainfield patrolman Michael Grennier, a computer expert, said the
youths also were able to break into an American Telephone & Telegraph 
computer after obtaining a manual from a AT&T trash bin.
	   The investigation led to a South Plainfield youth, whose computer 
was seized in June. After Grennier and Green spent about 100 hours
looking through his computer, the other six were arrested Friday _ in 
Hillsdale, Westwood, Warren Township, Martinsville, Dover and Edison. 
	   But Jeffrey Fogel of the ACLU office in Newark said the Dover 
youth,:!=5he declined to identify, was unfairly singled out.
	   ``He has an electronic bulletin board and arresting him and seizing 
his computer amounts to seizing a printing press,'' Fogel said. ``It
would be like if someone put a stolen credit card number in a newspaper 
classified. Would you close down the newspaper?'' 
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