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Computer Crime

November 23, 1988 | PAUL FELDMAN, Times Staff Writer
When it comes to data diddling, logic bombing, malicious hacking and other everyday forms of computer crime, there is no lack of laws on the books. Even that most sexy, state-of-the-art technological curse, the computer virus, may well be addressed--if not specifically cited--in state and federal criminal statutes, experts say. Successful prosecutions, however, are a different story, tending to decrease dramatically as the sophistication of the electronic misdeed increases.
June 6, 2013 | Shashank Bengali and Ken Dilanian
In January 2010, when Google accused Chinese hackers of infiltrating its network to track emails of human rights activists, the Obama administration didn't disclose what U.S. diplomats in Beijing believed: China's Politburo had directed the attack. Today the White House no longer shies from publicly accusing Beijing of launching a sophisticated range of cyber attacks on U.S. computer networks to steal corporate and government secrets -- including those of naval propulsion systems and gas pipeline technology -- worth billions of dollars.
March 5, 1998 | Reuters
Computer crime is booming and few people are doing enough to protect themselves against assaults ranging from stolen laptops to high-tech Internet heists worth millions, a San Francisco-based watchdog group said. In its third-annual survey, the Computer Security Institute said 520 specialists polled at U.S. corporations, government agencies, financial institutions and universities reported that the wired world was becoming increasingly dangerous.
March 27, 2013 | By Matt Pearce, This post has been corrected. See the note below for details.
A Wisconsin man could face years in federal prison if he is convicted of helping hacker collective Anonymous take down Koch Industries' website during protests in the state's capital in 2011, according to an indictment revealed this week. The charges were announced Tuesday by the U.S. attorney's office in Wichita, Kan. -- the home of Koch Industries, a $115-billion-a-year oil and manufacturing conglomerate owned by libertarian iconoclasts Charles and David Koch. Officials said Eric J. Rosol, 37, of Black Creek, Wis., participated in an Anonymous-organized shutdown of Koch websites and on Feb. 27 and 28 in 2011.
August 7, 1988 | GEORGE WHITE, Times Staff Writer
The corporate war against computer crime has come into the open. Executives are stepping up efforts to stop computer hackers and disgruntled employees from manipulating their data processing systems to embezzle funds, uncover secrets and destroy data. Among other things, security-conscious businesses are installing sophisticated "access control" gadgetry, bringing in special consultants and working more closely with other companies and law enforcement authorities.
October 12, 1989 | MICHAEL SCHRAGE
I'm sick of viruses. I'm even sicker of the weasels who program them. Starting at midnight tonight, the so-called Columbus Day virus (also known as the Datacrime virus) will allegedly spring to life to destroy all the hard disk data on thousands of IBM-compatible personal computers. Picture someone sneaking into your office and torching every item in your files--letters, reports, memos. Everything. Multiply that by thousands and you have computerdom's equivalent to Hurricane Hugo.
January 3, 1990
A teen-ager pleaded guilty Tuesday to charges he used his home computer to make telephone bomb threats to a school and a restaurant and to tie up the phone lines of two law enforcement agencies. The 17-year-old high school student from San Gabriel pleaded guilty in Pasadena Juvenile Court to two felony counts of making a false bomb report and one felony count of obtaining telephone services by fraud. Deputy Dist. Atty.
May 19, 1995
It won't take another salvo of overly broad and breathless laws from Congress to confront crime on the worldwide computer web known as the Internet. Good old-fashioned police work and statutes already on the books will suffice in almost all cases. A law broken is a law broken, even if that occurs in cyberspace. Take, for example, the downloading of pornography from the Net into one's home computer. Yes, some think that's a problem, but it isn't one that would be solved by Sen. James J.
It took federal law enforcement officials all of eight days to arrest Gary Dale Hoke, the PairGain Technologies employee who in April put up a bogus Internet announcement that the Tustin-based developer of telecommunications technology was being acquired by an Israeli outfit for $1.35 billion. The speed and efficiency of Hoke's apprehension amounted to blinding speed in the world of securities fraud, where cases can take years to investigate and prosecute.
The sentencing in Los Angeles on Monday of Kevin Mitnick, the nation's most notorious computer hacker, for breaking into Sun Microsystems computers would ordinarily be cause for celebration by the federal government. Officials are still smarting from Mitnick's 1983 efforts to break into the Pentagon's computers. But federal officials are in no mood to celebrate.
February 6, 2013 | Michael Hiltzik
As martyrs go, Aaron Swartz was an extraordinary example of the breed. A computer programming genius, he had helped develop the social networking site Reddit and became known as a leading advocate for easy and free information sharing on the Web. When Swartz committed suicide in January, while awaiting trial on federal computer hacking charges that could have landed him in prison for 35 years and cost him fines of $1 million, his death was seen...
May 13, 2012
Los Angeles County voters will soon select a new district attorney, and it likely will be their most consequential vote in years. It is hard to overstate the role that the top prosecutor of the nation's most populous county will have as California completely reinvents its justice system. Residents must demand a D.A. who will do his or her utmost to keep them safe, while at the same time embracing reform and ensuring smarter, and less costly, punishment and supervision of nonviolent criminals.
February 17, 2010 | By Bob Drogin
The crisis began when college basketball fans downloaded a free March Madness application to their smart phones. The app hid spyware that stole passwords, intercepted e-mails and created havoc. Soon 60 million cellphones were dead. The Internet crashed, finance and commerce collapsed, and most of the nation's electric grid went dark. White House aides discussed putting the Army in American cities. That, spiced up with bombs and hurricanes, formed the doomsday scenario when 10 former White House advisors and other top officials joined forces Tuesday in a rare public cyber war game designed to highlight the potential vulnerability of the nation's digital infrastructure to crippling attack.
February 16, 2010 | By Diane Pucin
A French judge issued an arrest warrant Monday for cyclist Floyd Landis, disgraced and stripped of his 2006 Tour de France title because of doping, in connection with a computer hacking case that occurred as he defended himself. The court wants to question Landis about allegations that he or someone involved with the cyclist hacked into the computer system of the French national anti-doping lab. Landis on Monday denied he hacked anything and said no one has served any warrant against him, though he wasn't sure whether his former coach, Arnie Baker, had received one. It was allegedly a computer registered to Baker that is associated with the case.
January 19, 2010 | By W.J. Hennigan
For U.S. military firms, the latest revelations of highly sophisticated hacker attacks on Google Inc. are highlighting a new reality, and a potentially lucrative business: The battlefield is shifting to cyberspace. Google's admission last week that it and other large companies were infiltrated by cyber-spies is bolstering prospects for major military contractors that in recent years have been intensifying their focus from developing weapons to defending computer systems and networks.
January 15, 2010 | By Jessica Guynn
The scale and sophistication of the cyber attacks on Google Inc. and other large U.S. corporations by hackers in China is raising national security concerns that the Asian superpower is escalating its industrial espionage efforts on the Internet. While the U.S. focus has been primarily on protecting military and state secrets from cyber spying, a new battle is being waged in which corporate computers and the valuable intellectual property they hold have become as much a target of foreign governments as those run by the Pentagon and the CIA. "This is a watershed moment in the cyber war," James Mulvenon, director of the Center for Intelligence Research and Analysis at Defense Group Inc., a national-security firm, said Thursday.
Assistant U.S. Atty. Chris Painter, who has prosecuted a number of high-profile hacking cases in Los Angeles, has been named to a top computer crime-fighting post with the Justice Department in Washington. Painter, 42, was recently named deputy chief of the Justice Department's computer crime and intellectual property section, one of the fastest-growing areas of the department. As an assistant U.S.
Financial losses from computer crime seem to be growing dramatically--perhaps into the tens of billions of dollars annually for companies worldwide, according to an author of an annual survey released today. Computer crime is increasing, but views diverge about which problems--from high-profile vandalism such as last year's "Love Bug" e-mail virus, to profit-seeking hackers, to insider theft of corporate secrets--cause the most damage.
January 15, 2010 | By Barbara Demick
"Your Honourable institute is invited," read the e-mail sent a few days ago to Sharon Hom, director of Human Rights in China, urging her participation in the eighth international summit of nongovernmental organizations. Hom immediately smelled a rat. The stilted wording and a few misspellings alerted her that the invite to this purported summit in "California, USA" was just the latest ploy to trick her into opening an e-mail attachment meant to compromise her computer. For years, cyber attacks have targeted human rights advocates and others critical of China, including academics, journalists, Tibetan groups, supporters of the Uighur minority and the banned Falun Gong movement -- in fact, anybody whose work might have irked the government.
January 14, 2010 | By David Pierson and Barbara Demick
Bouquets were laid in front of Google Inc.'s headquarters in China on Wednesday, a show of support for a company whose threat to exit the country rather than be party to more censorship is a dramatic shot across the bow of the Chinese Communist Party. But while Chinese cyberspace was awash with chatter about Google's gambit, state-controlled media downplayed the story, reporting that Google had been a victim of cyber attacks in China but making no mention of the company's allegations that human rights activists' e-mail accounts had been hacked.
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