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Even Child Abuse Should Not Prompt Hacking

Security firm Sophos conducted a poll to find that users strongly objected to hacking computers of child abusers even if with good intentions. Almost two-thirds of the people using computers protested the practice of infecting or intruding into PCs even if they are imagined to belong to pedophiles, the poll revealed.

Sophos' online survey in February this year, gathered the opinions of 233 user participants from all over U.K. About 64% of the respondents thought it was wrong to illegally access a computer, however, high the suspicions rest on owners to be child abusers.

Senior technology consultant for Sophos, Graham Cluley said in a company press release published on February 28, 2007 that a mere doubt on someone that he might be engaged in child abuse does not justify the act of infecting and hacking into his computer. That's what majority of the individuals questioned articulated.

They viewed that two mistakes don't result in a right outcome. Hackers of any kind, with any purpose are after all violating the law. Anyone who finds a strong reason or evidence to call another person a criminal should not act alone; rather report it to authorities that would take the investigation through its legal course.

The sentencing of 66-year old California-based former judge Ronald C. Kline on the basis of hackers' evidences encouraged Sophos to take the poll. Kline faces a sentence of jail for 27 months charged with possessing child pornography. Kline came to the attention of authorities after a Canadian hacker Brad Willman planted a Trojan horse on his computer. The Trojan disguised as pictures of child abuse. Willman planted it on an Internet newsgroup that pedophiles visited in 1999. Willman infiltrated the PCs of several people he infected while focusing on those he thought acted in child abuse.

This type of hacking can jeopardize a police investigation, continued Cluley. For, suspects to be child abusers could say that the hacker himself injected the porn material on their computers and that is how it came there.

As authorities download evidence from porn sites to investigate probable suspects, they could themselves fall victim to online attacks.

Related article: Even Child Abuse Should Not Prompt Hacking

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