04 September 2016

Florida man arrested for hacking Linux sever in 2011

The Department of Justice arrested a computer programmer from South Florida last week  for allegedly hacking into the Linux Kernel Organisation's kernel.org website and the servers of the Linux Foundation.

Donald Ryan Austin, 27, has been charged with four counts of “intentional transmission causing damage to a protected computer.” 

The DOJ press release stated: “Specifically, he is alleged to have gained unauthorized access to the four servers by using the credentials of an individual associated with the Linux Kernel Organization.” 

"Austin is charged with causing damage to four servers located in the Bay Area by installing malicious software. Specifically, he is alleged to have gained unauthorised access to the four servers by using the credentials of an individual associated with the Linux Kernel Organization," the DOJ press release reads.

"According to the indictment, Austin used that access to install rootkit and trojan software, as well as to make other changes to the servers."

Austin was arrested after he identified himself when stopped for a traffic offence, on 28 August in Miami Shores.  

According to the indictment, around August  2011, he stole and  used the credentials of a Linux system administrator, with the initials "J.H." to infect the servers with the Phalanx malware. 

He  broke into several  servers, including “Odin1,” “Zeus1,” and “Pub3."