Feeds

Pentagon hacker says charges have been manufactured

Claims US arguments 'falsely constructed'

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

The hacker at the centre of an extradition storm after he broke into the US Military and NASA computer systems has said the charges against him in the US have been manufactured to ease his extradition there.

"For it to be extraditable under their computer laws in America you have to have caused $5,000 worth of damage and lo and behold they say that every computer I was on I caused exactly $5,000 worth of damage so it is patently a falsely structured argument," Gary McKinnon told OUT-LAW.

McKinnon makes the claims in OUT-LAW Radio, a new weekly podcast from OUT-LAW launched today.

Home Secretary John Reid signed McKinnon's order for extradition to the US in July, a decision McKinnon is now appealing. McKinnon's lawyers have warned that not only could he face a secret military trial with no right of appeal, but that he could even be sent to detention camp Guantanemo Bay.

"At first I laughed when this was first raised, I said 'come on, don't be ridiculous', but as someone pointed out most of the people if not all the people have never even proven to have been terrorists and they've been languishing there for years," McKinnon tells OUT-LAW Radio. "Whereas allegedly I've directly attacked military networks, so that put it in perspective for me."

McKinnon admits accessing the secret computers in 2001 and 2002, saying that he was looking for – and found – evidence of alien life and reverse-engineered alien technology. But whereas UK prosecutors said that he would serve community service, US prosecutors are publicly threatening him with sentences of up to 70 years in jail.

McKinnon argues that he should be tried, but that it should be in the UK, where the offence was committed. He says that he was working with very basic hacking tools from a simple internet connection, and that the only reason he was able to access systems was because security was so poor.

"When you look at the fact that my method for gaining entry was scanning for blank passwords, technically you could say that there was no security to begin with," he said.

Hear the interview: OUT-LAW Radio

Copyright © 2006, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SMASH the Bash bug! Apple and Red Hat scramble for patch batches
'Applying multiple security updates is extremely difficult'
Shellshock: 'Larger scale attack' on its way, warn securo-bods
Not just web servers under threat - though TENS of THOUSANDS have been hit
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
Hackers thrash Bash Shellshock bug: World races to cover hole
Update your gear now to avoid early attacks hitting the web
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.