[ISN] Washington Post fails to protect Deep Throat

InfoSec News isn at c4i.org
Thu Feb 23 04:36:25 EST 2006


By Nick Farrell
21 February 2006

THE WASHINGTON POST, famous for hiding the name of its Deep Throat
source during the Watergate scandal, might have accidentally revealed
the name of one of its sources in a less important yarn about a

Hack Brian Krebs penned a fairly gushing piece about a 21-year-old
hacker identified as "0x80" who claimed to have broken into 2,000 PCs
around the globe. 0x80 apparently uses the hacked PCs to send out

In amongst detailed descriptions of how 0x80 smokes, which in the US
journalistic style is called 'colour', Krebs revealed that his subject
lived in a small town in Middle America. "The nearest businesses are a
used-car lot, a gas station/convenience store and a strip club," the
article said.

All hard to trace, but for the fact that the article ran a doctored
picture of 0x80 which when the people at Slashdot had [1] a look at
the metadata in the pic it revealed 0x80 lived in the town of Roland,
population 2,842.

Since only a third of the population are 0x80's age, less than half of
them are male, and not that many live close to the strip club, he
shouldn't be too easy to find, particularly with Kreb's colourful

When this was pointed out to Krebs in his bog [2], he said that he was
aware of it.

The picture is no longer linked from the article, but it should not be 
long before 0x80 will be located. Just as well digital cameras were 
not around during Watergate. µ

[1] http://it.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=177830&cid=14748871
[2] http://blog.washingtonpost.com/securityfix/2006/02/more_proof_of_rogue_installs_o.html

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