<p style="text-align: center;"></p> <p style="text-align: left;">Technology has always been a young person’s game, and those who grow up with innovation as part of their lives use those inventions more frequently than their elders, both for good and ill. For that reason, the 20<sup>th</sup> century is filled with instances of teenagers committing crimes involving technology that their seniors barely understand. The arrest yesterday (Dec. 9) of a 16-year-old boy from the Netherlands in connection with <a alt="((CONLINK|1268|hacker%20attacks%20against%20websites%20hostile%20%20to%20WikiLeaks))" href="">hacker attacks against websites hostile to WikiLeaks</a> is merely the latest such potential example. If he is convicted, he would join these seven other teenage tech criminals who hit the headlines, some of them years after their crimes.</p> <p></p>

<strong>The Call of Duty attacker:</strong>

<p style="text-align: center;"></p> <p> While the world focused on the WikiLeaks attacks, another teenager was arrested yesterday and charged with a denial-of-service attack, this one against servers hosting online play for the game Call of Duty. Allegedly initiated by a still-unnamed 17-year-old from Manchester, England, the DOS attack first struck the game in September.</p> <p></p>

<strong>Michael Crippen:</strong>

<p style="text-align: center;"></p> <p> Authorities say Crippen, 19, thought he would just make some cash on the side, like any intrepid college student, by<a alt="((CONLINK|1485|%20altering%20Xbox%20%20video%20game%20consoles))" href=""> altering Xbox video game consoles</a> so he and others could play copied games. However, the Department of Homeland Security doesn’t take copyright violation lightly. It arrested Crippen in August of 2009.</p> <p></p>

<strong>Masters of Deception:</strong>

<p style="text-align: center;"></p> <p> A hacker collective formed by New York City high school students in the late 1980s, the MOD hacked into the <a alt="((CONLINK|70|networks%20of%20phone%20companies))" href="">networks of phone companies</a> . In 1992, a federal grand jury indicted MOD members on a wide variety of charges relating to hacking activities.</p> <p>The case is notable because to win an indictment of the MOD, the FBI set up the first phone tap for data signals in American history.</p> <p></p>

<strong>Owen Thorn Walker:</strong>

<p style="text-align: center;"></p> <p> As a lonely, home-schooled child with Asperger’s syndrome, Walker found a home on the Internet where he could be among his peers. However, that Internet use turned nefarious when, under the <a alt="((CONLINK|1362|hacker))" href="">hacker</a> handle “AKILL,” Walker created a botnet that stole almost $20 million. Walker was arrested and tried in his home country of New Zealand. He pleaded guilty to damaging a University of Pennsylvania computer but received only a fine of about $15,000 and no jail time.</p> <p></p>

<strong>Kevin Mitnick:</strong>

<p style="text-align: center;"></p> <p> The subject of a years-long, nationwide FBI manhunt, Mitnick is one of the most famous hackers of all time. While in his 20s and 30s, Mitnick hacked into the computers of Nokia, Motorola and other major corporations and spent three years in federal prison.</p> <p>However, Mitnick had begun his hacking career much earlier. In 1979, as a 16-year-old, Mitnick hacked into the mainframe computer that the Digital Equipment Company used for development. Initially Mitnick got away, but he was arrested and convicted of the crime nine years later.</p> <p></p>

<strong>Dennis Moran:</strong>

<p style="text-align: center;"></p> <p> There are denial-of-service attacks, and then there are denial-of-service attacks. In 2000, operating under the hacker name “Coolio,” the then-18-year-old Moran crashed the sites of Yahoo!, eBay, Amazon, E*TRADE and, defaced the websites of DARE and the Los Angeles Police Department, and infiltrated web servers on four military bases.</p> <p>Before long, the FBI caught up with Moran and charged him with seven felonies. After plea-bargaining the charges down to misdemeanors, Moran spent a year in prison, during which time he had the job of programming the prison’s computers.</p> <p></p>

<strong>Theodore Hall:</strong>

<p style="text-align: center;"></p> <p> Defacing a website or sending out a denial-of-service attack could be brushed off as immature acting out by teenagers who didn’t know any better, but Hall’s crime in the 1940s fit into an entirely different category. A savant physicist, at age 19 Hall became the youngest scientist to work on the Manhattan Project. He was also the youngest person to pass American nuclear secrets onto the Russians.</p> <p>However, Hall was never punished for his crimes. The FBI discovered Hall’s treason by decoding secret Russian communications, and realized that arresting Hall would let the Soviet Union know the United States had broken its codes. The FBI decided the codes were more valuable than Hall, and left him in peace, allowing him to have a distinguished academic career in the life sciences. Only with the declassification of Cold War documents in the 1990s did the public learn about Hall’s crimes. He died in 1999.</p>

Top 7 Teenage Tech Criminals