Friday, January 21, 2005

Clipping File

Maybe this undated article (saved from clippings and whatnot I have been throwing out over the last month) is from fall 1984 or later -- maybe Mom mailed it to me while I was at school. Otherwise, I am not sure why I would have cut it out, or kept it. It's an AP item titled "Computer raid / W&M officials stunned by student's work." It reads in part

It was a clear case of trespassing, if not burglary, but College of William and Mary officials were more concerned with how it was done than in calling in the police.

In the summer of 1982, a student at the college, using trial and error, gained unauthorized access to the school's main computer. He wandered at will through the confidential files of students and faculty. ...

The intruder accomplished his feat without picking a lock or prying open a window. It was all done from the comfort of home.

It was the first known incident of a personal home computer, or microcomputer, breaking into the college's computer system.

Officials have increased security in anticipation of future intrusions by what some computerists call "hackers" - computer wizards who figure out how to break into supposedly secure computer systems.

The article concludes that the student "'did no harm'" and received only a reprimand.

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