[ISN] As Ethicists, They Don't Hack It

From: InfoSec News (isnat_private)
Date: Tue Aug 14 2001 - 02:57:22 PDT

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    Forwarded by: security curmudgeon <jerichoat_private>
    [What is it these days. Corporate windbags like Russ Cooper preaching
    for 'responsible disclosure' and a 'forum' for it, without outlining
    how that would happen. Now we have others including Goldstein
    preaching about ethics and changes without understanding some simple
    facts about the topics at hand. Whatever happened to the concept of
    suggesting a solution to a problem you bring up...  
    - security curmudgeon]
    The need for this last criteria emerged at one of the weekend's key
    events, a panel discussion featuring three of the biggest names in
    hacking:  HAL2001 organizer Rop Gonggrijp, CCC leader and ICANN board
    member Andy Mueller-Maguhn, and Emmanuel Goldstein, editor in chief of
    2600: The Hacker Quarterly.
    As colorful as these legends were, and despite some fine reminiscing
    about the 1980s -- the dawn of hacking civilization -- many in the
    crowd seemed to think the movement lacked a clear vision of the
    When, after an hour or so of kicking things around, they opened up the
    floor to questions, a man in his early 20s asked for guidance on how a
    contemporary hacker should form his ethical code.
    Gonggrijp demurred, saying that since ethics are personal to each
    individual, an ethical code is something each person has to form for
    Mueller-Maguhn was equally vague, although a bit more forceful.
    "You're responsible for everything you do," he said. "Ethics are not a
    law. Ethics are a sense of how things might work."
    Goldstein then offered an example: "I don't think it's a big deal to
    deface a company website. I think it's a valid political statement."
    The young questioner, who seemed only vaguely satisfied with the
    responses he received, was not alone in his discontent.
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