Sunday, April 28, 2013

On the Media: Hacking Without Hacking

Hacking without Hacking
On the Media

This week, a man named David Nosal was convicted under a federal hacking statute called The Computer Fraud and Abuse act of hacking and stealing trade secrets, even though he never actually broke into a computer. The CFAA is the same law under which activist Aaron Swartz was prosecuted. How is it possible to convict someone of hacking without them ever, you know, hacking? Way back in September, 2011, we talked to the Electronic Frontier Foundation's Marcia Hoffmann about how this law's vague wording has given prosecutors broad license to go after almost anyone in front of a computer. It's even been used in the past to charge people with violating terms of service. When's the last time you read one of those? Many legal scholars say that even Stephen Colbert and Bill Clinton ran afoul of the law when Clinton let Colbert author the first tweet from his Twitter account.

To Listen to the Interview

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