Dark Side: The rise and fall of a suburban hacker

Matt Hrodey had an interesting piece on Daniel Placek of Darkode infamy. It begins:

Daniel Placek was just old enough to buy a beer when the FBI knocked on the door to his parents’ house in Bayside, where he was living, and seized his computer. Placek, a 21-year-old self-taught computer programmer, confessed most everything to the agents: He was, essentially, a “black-hat” hacker, a bad guy. He’d grown up in an upstanding family, active in their local Catholic church, his father a licensed HAM radio operator who worked for Verizon. But somehow, as an isolated coder, he’d gone far astray.

His penance was five years of cooperation with the FBI, who, in examining his PC after the 2010 raid, found evidence of a kid dabbling in everything from “botnets” and spamming software to “false phishing” sites and “root access” penetrations, like a self-directed survey course in nefarious computing.

Read more on Milwaukee Magazine. You can also hear an interview with more of an update on Lake Effect.

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