Bank of France's Accidental Hacker Acquitted
A Bank of France office building in Paris.
A man who said his hack into the Bank of France's systems was an accident has been released by the judge overseeing his case.
In 2008, the then-unemployed man was using Skype in an attempt to call premium-rate telephone numbers for free when he dialed a random number and then entered the code "123456," Le Nouvel Observateur reported.
Although he didn't realize what he had done, the man was granted access to the French central bank's debt service.
The bank was made aware of the breach right away, and launched an investigation. Even though the "accidental" hacker had made no effort to hide his identity — his address was listed on his Skype account — it took police two years to track him down.
Once inside his home, officers noticed that the man's computer was too old and slow to commit serious online crimes, but took him into custody anyway.
At the time of his arrest, the absurdly easy passcode still appeared to grant access to the Bank of France's system. Its inverse, "654321." reportedly also worked.
It's not clear which exact systems the man accessed or what data he may have had been able to obtain.