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  • simstimHackers 95

    Released August 4th, 1995
    Size 210.8 MB
    Download hackers95.mp4

    Hackers 95 is an independent documentary by Phone-E and RF Burns shot during the summer of 1995. The documentary covers hacker happenings during that summer including Summercon and Defcon III. There are plenty of interviews and random clips from these two conferences. The documentary also includes a separate segment on Area 51 as well as a Secret Service press release on Operation Cybersnare.

    The first segment of the documentary includes interviews of Chris Goggans aka Erik Bloodaxe and Eric Corley aka Emmanuel Goldstein during the Summercon of 1995 in Atlanta, Georgia. The outspoken Erik Bloodaxe begins with explaining how Summercon is the best con in the hacker community. At the same time, he is bashing on 2600 Magazine for being a paid for publication as opposed to his publication, Phrack, being completely free for everyone. A topic of hacker ethics is brought up where Erik identifies a catch-all rationalizations such as “Information wants to be free” as a lame excuse to hack. According to Erik, true hackers need to be truthful to the themselves and others about what they are doing and if they are breaking the law they need to explain their reasons. On the other hand, Emmanuel Goldstein notes that hacking is illegal only because of flaws in the legal system. He compares hacking to trespassing in a library and getting 20 years in prison for that. Erik Bloodaxe picks up on that notion to note that government and law enforcement are simply afraid of something they do not understand, they are afraid of hackers. Erik describes his efforts in bridging the gap between hackers and law enforcement even when the two sides have completely different view points. The two also offer interesting view points on the recently released movie Hackers and the story of Kevin Mitnick. Erik calls the movie a bad case of after-school special which is going to cause harm due to hoards of AOL idiots watching it and coming in to the scene calling themselves hackers. Emmanuel sees some good to come out of the movie since it tries to portray hackers as essentially good people. Both Emmanuel and Bloodaxe agree that the whole Markoff/Shimomura and Mitnick story is a premeditated act to make Mitnick public enemy #1 in order to aid in order for Markoff and Shimomura to profit on the story. The segment concludes with random clips and pranks from the conference including a “Cordless Chaos” clip on breaking into cordless phone conversations to get callers to switch to MCI.

    The Defcon III segment includes recordings from several talks. Bruce Schneier talks about cryptography becoming more frequently used by consumers in the future. Robert Steele compares hackers to a national resource, a way to cure the criminally negligent computer and communications industry. Jim Settle talks about the creation of FBI's National Computer Crime Squad. Winn Schwartau discusses the Directed Energy Weapons (DEW) program in the military and how it was used during the Gulf War. The segment ends with an interview with ufologist Glenn Campbell discussing the need to put constant pressure on the military to release information to prevent them from becoming completely unaccountable to the public.

    The last segment of Hackers 95 is a Secret Service public release on operation CyberSnare. Operation CyberSnare was an undercover BBS sting operations designed to create an exchange forum for hackers to trade credit cards, cellular phone electronic serial numbers, phone cards and other illegally obtained information. The Cellco 51 BBS was set up for this purpose and openly advertised itself as a forum catering to individuals involved in unauthorized computer intrusions. The operation resulted in a large number of seized computers and six arrests.

    Hackers 95 does an excellent job capturing hacker community of mid-90s from a perspective free of sensationalism. As an independent documentary it does not shy away from acts of harmless pranks and fooling around that occur at the cons.

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