• United States



by Dave Gradijan

Briton Allegedly Hacked into U.S. Government Networks

Apr 13, 20062 mins
CSO and CISOData and Information Security

A London man is waiting to hear if he will face prosecution in the United States after being accused of illegally hacking into 97 computers operated by U.S. government and military departments, the Associated Press reports on

Gary McKinnon, 40, allegedly accessed U.S. government computers between February 2001 and March 2001 – including two at the Pentagon – and caused $700,000 in damages, the AP reports.

At a previous hearing, his lawyers said McKinnon had been trying to expose weak computer security and find information he believed the United States was withholding about UFOs, according to the AP. He reportedly viewed information about naval munitions and shipbuilding, but no classified information.

At an extradition hearing on Wednesday, lawyer Edward Lawson told a British court that McKinnon fears he will be prosecuted by a military commission under U.S. anti-terror laws if he is sent to the United States for a trial, the AP reports.

District Judge Nicholas Evans said he would decide on May 10 if British law permits McKinnon to be extradited to the United States – a decision that ultimately lies with Britain’s home secretary, according to the AP. Defense witnessed have said McKinnon could face as many as 60 years in prison if he is convicted in the United States, the AP reports.

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