Adrian Lamo charged with computer crimes

FBI agents armed with a federal arrest warrant out of New York were searching for Adrian Lamo Thursday, SecurityFocus has confirmed.

Lamo has been charged in New York under Title 18 U.S.C. 1030 and 1029, according to deputy federal public defender Mary French, who says she’s spoken with one of the FBI agents that were searching for Lamo. The federal laws prohibit unauthorized access to a protected computer, and illegal possession of stolen “access devices” — a term that encompasses passwords, credit card numbers, and the like. French did not know what the specific allegations were, because the charging document is sealed. The 22-year-old Lamo has become famous for publicly exposing gaping security holes at large corporations, then voluntarily helping the companies fix the vulnerabilities he exploited — sometimes visiting their offices or signing non-disclosure agreements in the process. Lamo believes the arrest warrant is for his most high-profile hack. Early last year he penetrated the New York Times, after a two-minute scan turned up seven misconfigured proxy servers acting as doorways between the public Internet and the Times private intranet, making the latter accessible to anyone capable of properly configuring their Web browser. Full Story

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