Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in

16 Years Old And Infiltrating NASA

The Fifteen Greatest Hacking Exploits
By

After the Army and the Pentagon, any hacker worthy of the name dreams about getting into NASA's servers, the protection of which is renowned. It was in 1999 that a young hacker with the nickname of c0mrade, better known as Jonathan James, accomplished this exploit at the age of 16.

On June 29 and 30, 1999, this young hacker made a mess of NASA using a simple Pentium computer. He gained access by breaking the password of a server belonging to the government agency located in Alabama. He was able to freely roam the network, and stole several files, including the source code of the International Space Station.

Panic at NASA

According to NASA, the value of the documents stolen by James was estimated at around $1.7 million. To stop the attack, NASA was forced to turn off its systems and reboot them, incurring a loss of $41,000. The capture of the young hacker was fast, with NASA doing everything it could to find him.

However, his young age allowed James to avoid prison. A few lawyers estimated that, had he been an adult at the time, he would have spent at least ten years in prison for stealing documents classified as "defense secrets". Jonathan James, on the other hand, was satisfied with a bit of irony by saying "The code itself sucked... it was not worth the $1.7 million they said".

Display all 10 comments.
This thread is closed for comments
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , September 4, 2008 7:27 AM
    They should have very serious consequences for hackers. I'm tired of defaced websites, viruses, trojans, etc. Although it is fun to screw around with other people's computers..especially if they've done it to you...but either way there should be some huge penalties for hacking. I say chop off a thumb on the first offence. 2nd offence: chope off the rest of the fingers on that hand. Hackers along with script kiddies would cease to exist.
  • 3 Hide
    itadakimasu , September 12, 2008 7:20 PM
    sounds like you have been the victim of malware and virii while doing some questionable internet browsing...
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , September 16, 2008 4:41 AM
    Well, 'Anonymous', I hope you're using Tor to browse the 'intarweb', you worthless plebian.
    Here in the USA, we aren't barbarians, and the only people who would even deserve such harsh treatment would be rapists and their ilk. Even so, we just lock em up and release them on probation a few months/years later. :p 
    Not perfect, but I say cutting off fingers because you're too stupid to take basic steps to protect your system? Kinda harsh.
    The difference between a robber and a hacker, is that you can completely stop a hacker by unplugging your phone line from your modem.
    Do that, for the sake of humanity. :p 
  • 0 Hide
    arkadi , September 18, 2008 1:27 PM
    Well it is important info, but i don't think you can call them the best :)  they got basted after all. Governments got best hackers if you ask me.
  • 0 Hide
    Reynod , September 18, 2008 1:39 PM
    There are numerous other well documented hacks that probably deserved a mention.

    At least you did take the moral high ground.

    You neglected to mention Electron and Phoenix ... clearly they were better than most of these mentioned here.



  • 2 Hide
    deadliest , October 17, 2008 10:44 AM
    hmmm so this hacker list is not complete oh oh oh , you should have guys, it was most interesting reading about this. But i think hackers are a necessary evil without them how would i play my pirated games :D 
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , December 13, 2010 11:03 PM
    @ Arkadi
    "Well it is important info, but i don't think you can call them the best :)  they got basted after all. Governments got best hackers if you ask me. "

    Lol, where do you think the Government found there hackers? They hired guys like this ^^Rofl
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , January 27, 2011 9:12 AM
    Script kiddies. Blegh.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , April 13, 2011 8:58 AM
    ahhhhhh
    its good to be a hacker
  • 0 Hide
    jordanprogrammer , October 8, 2013 9:19 AM
    the best website for programming language:
    www.jordanprogrammer.tk