Convicted Hacker ‘Weev’ Gets Another Chance At Freedom

Attorneys for convicted hacker Andrew “Weev” Auernheimer will appear in court this week in a last-ditch attempt to win his freedom and overturn a verdict that could have a chilling effect on the work of researchers who help keep the Internet safe.

Prosecutors have said Auernheimer, 28, is a publicity-hungry hacker who broke the law when he found a security flaw in an AT&T website three years ago that allowed him to collect 114,000 email addresses belonging to iPad 3G users.

Auernheimer turned over that information to the gossip site Gawker, which posted some partially redacted addresses, prompting an FBI investigation.

In 2012, a jury found Auernheimer guilty of violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, the same controversial law used to prosecute the late Internet activist Aaron Swartz. Auernheimer has now served about 12 months of his 41-month prison sentence.

On Wednesday, Auernheimer’s attorneys will argue that he did not commit a crime because AT&T’s security was so lax that those email addresses were publicly available.

“The behavior in question here is no different than typing a URL in a Web browser,” Auernheimer’s attorney, Tor Ekeland, said in an interview. “If what Weev did is illegal, then what millions of normal computer users do every day is a felony as well.”

via Convicted Hacker ‘Weev’ Gets Another Chance At Freedom.

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