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A history of hacking

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Altering a Web site

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One of the most common -- and simplest -- forms of hacking is altering a Web site. On Aug. 17, 1996, hackers changed the federal Department of Justice's site to protest the U.S. government's attempts to regulate the Internet. Administrators took the site offline for two days to fix it.

Justice before Justice after
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Jan. 29, 1996: 'Hackers' home page

A hacker changes the home page for the MGM/UA movie Hackers.

Hackers before Hackers after
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Sept. 19, 1996: Central Intelligence Agency

A group of hackers, apparently Swedish, change the CIA's home page to read "Welcome to the Central Stupidity Agency."

November 1996: Kriegsman Furs

An anti-fur hacker replaced the home page of Kriegsman, a North Carolina furrier, with an almost-apologetic plea for animal rights. The page included links to the Web sites of several animal rights groups.

Feb. 1997-Jan. 1998: Indonesian government

Sites belonging to the Indonesian government have been attacked repeatedly, usually in protest over political repression in East Timor or, more recently, economic issues. Most of the attacks simply defaced the pages or replaced them with manifestoes. But one attack on Nov. 22, 1997, completely erased two dozen government sites.

Sept. 30, 1997: AirTran Airlines

Six days after ValuJet changed its name to AirTran, a hacker broke into the company's Web site and inserted several references to the 1996 crash of a ValuJet plane in the Everglades that killed 110 people.

Nov. 14, 1997: Spice Girls

This attack appeared to be equal parts disdain for the Spice Girls and opposition to opening the Internet to the masses. It stayed up for several days

biz0525spiceorig CMYK Spice girls after
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Jan. 7, 1998: UNICEF

This site was apparently attacked simply because it had poor security. The hackers left messages demanding the release of Kevin Mitnick and the return of the TV show Mr. Belvedere.

biz0525uniceforig CMYK Unicef before
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Jan. 18, 1998: International Church of Christ

The attack changed the group's name to "International Businesses of Christ" and accused the church of being a cult that brainwashes its followers

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Feb. 20, 1998: U.S. Department of Commerce

A hacker claiming to belong to SUid (Society Under Inet Dependance) left a few personal messages, and little else, on the Commerce Department's Stat-USA site.

Church of Christ before Church of Christ after
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-- Much of the information and screen captures in this list are courtesy of http://www.2600.com, the Web site for 2600, The Hacker's Quarterly. More extensive lists of hacking incidents are also available online; one such site is http://www.txdirect.net/users/wall/hacker.htm


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