Saturday, 16 March 2013

Hacker Hired?

Ecuador Hired Hacker Wanted in the US

Kevin Mitnick, known as one of the most wanted computer hackers in the United States at one time, seems to still manage to poke the hornet’s nest. It turned out that his security outfit, Mitnick Security Consulting, was the one who helped Rafael Correa win the presidential elections in Ecuador.

In fact, Correa is not loved by the United States that has historically had a problem with democratically elected governments who appear vaguely socialist in their leanings. Media reports suggest that Correa feared he might have the election stolen from him by hackers, most likely from the United States or otherwise. That’s why he decided to hire Mitnick to protect the Net Lock computer system. The latter has been assigned the task of tabulating the country’s elections.

Mitnick admitted that almost two decades ago he was busted for hacking, but now he is allowed to do the same thing absolutely legitimately. Of course, he’d love it. Perhaps, you don’t remember that in the 1990s Kevin was on a hacking spree and gained access to hundreds of universities, PCs and corporate networks. His targets included the likes of Apple, Motorola and even the FBI. In result, Mitnick was arrested and banged up for 5 years. After his release, Kevin helped private and public entities by providing them security consulting. He even worked for the American government to help them mitigate cyber threats.

However, Correa’s re-election is unlikely to sit that well with the United States. The American-trained economist has created his own “Citizens’ Revolution”, which is a socialist-oriented economic program having something in common with what Chavez achieved in Venezuela. Like Chavez, Correa is quite popular, but he is sometimes slammed for being authoritarian. By the way, it was Correa who has offered Julian Assange asylum in Ecuador’s London embassy.

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