RealNews

Vigilante Hacking Out of Order in AU

Vigilante hacking remains illegal under Australian law, although a recent report suggests it may be legal in the United States under that country’s nuisance statutes. A recent news report claims that “self-help” provisions under the US law enable individuals to “take action to mitigate an obvious nuisance”, thus providing a potential loophole for targets of malicious hackers to retaliate in kind. Retaliation may involve gaining access to a “zombie” system participating in a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack and shutting down the offending process, or preventing a machine infected with a network worm from being able to propagate. “Zombies” are compromised computers that a malicious hacker is using as a pawn in a DDoS attack. Often these will be home-user systems that have been compromised months prior to being activated. However Australia’s Erhan Karabardak, senior associate and IT law specialist with Jerrard and Stuk Lawyers in Melbourne, says that Australian law doesn’t allow net vigilantism and that won’t be changing. “I couldn’t foresee that this kind of behaviour would ever be authorised by any law in the near future,” he told ZDNet Australia . Full Story

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