History of cyber crime



Historyof cyber crime

Historyof cyber crime


Theterm hacking can be referred to as any technical effort that may beused to manipulate connected systems or the standard behavior ofnetwork connections. Hacking has been in existence for over acentury. It started in the 1870’s when several teenagers hacked thenew phone system that had just been made for the county’sauthorities. In the past 35 years, busy hackers have done thefollowing

In1971, John Draper, who was a computer hobbyist, adopted the CaptainCrush in children’s toy whistle and after while the authorities forphone tampering arrested him. He used children’s cereals, whichwere exactly 2600 hertz to open up telephone lines so that he couldmake long distance calls (Ortmeier2013).

In1975, there was the making of blue boxes by a California basedcomputer club known as the Homebrew computer club. It had two membersnamely Steve jobs and Steve Wozniak who later went ahead to becomethe founders of Apple computers.

In1984, the publishing of an underground magazine by Eric Corleyprovided hacking information to many people. The magazine was called2600: The Hacker Quarterly and after it was published it became aclearinghouse for computer and telephone hacking.

In1986, the Congress passed a law, which prohibited anyone to breakinto a computer. However, the law did not affect individuals who wereprimarily responsible for computer crimes.

In1987, the first MS-DOS computer virus, which was known as Brain, wasreleased to the Internet. Although the virus was harmless, thecomputers of users were infected with the virus that had anunencrypted text message sent to the some contact bases in Pakistan,which were known as the Brain Computer Services.

In1988, a self-replicating virus that was meant to exploit securityholes in UNIX systems was published to the Internet. The virus wasreleased by a 22-year graduate who was known as Robert Morris. Theself-replicating virus infected at least 6,000 systems, which formedat least one tenth of the total Internet’s computers at the time.


Deliberatelyintercepting another person’s call is regarded as illegal under theAct. In the U.S, law enforcement wiretapping became a tool in the1890s. However, the Supreme Court did not establish the mechanismconstitutionally until 1928. During the year 1928, it was the heightof prohibition. The first person to be convicted of wiretapping wasRoy Olmstead. However, although enough evidence was gathered about awiretap in his home the judge who presided over the case upheld hisconviction. According to the judge, eavesdropping did not mean thatthere was a physical invasion of privacy. The FBI broke into the homeof Martin Luther King Jr and planted bugs to tap his telephone callsbecause there was an assumption that he was cooperating with thecommunists (Mitic2009).

TheObama Administration has tabled a bill to the Congress, which willensure that communications firms such as skype and Facebook have thetechnical knowhow of unscrambling messages. Similarly, they should beable to intercept messages at any time when they are asked to providethem by officials. However according to the FBI such proposals byObama does not necessarily mean that they will expand their authoritybecause any intercepts that the FBI makes will need legal approval.When the interceptions are made, in communications networks criminalsare likely to use other technologies and the only way law enforcerscan have control is through tapping into their wireless lives.


Theact of acquiring very sensitive information is known as phishing. Thesensitive information may include credit card details, usernames andpasswords. Some of the techniques lure the unsuspecting public intocommunications is through online payment processors, social websites, IT administrators, auction sites and banks. The phishing ofemails is also being done through links that are infected withmalware (Ortmeier2013).


JerryFelix and Chris Hauck were the first people to explore the phishingconcept. It was first conducted in 1987 at the index conference. Thepaper that was presented by the two members about the exploration wascalled “System security: A Hacker’s Perspective.” It discusseda method that could be used by third parties so that they couldimitate trusted services. The term phishing came up from the onlinenewsgroup, which is based in America. Before 1995, people could beable to use false information to open AOL account. Most people used afake algorithmically generated credit card number. When AOL becameaware of the frauds that were going on, they clamped down all theaccounts and made sure that user’s AIM account was linked to theirAOL account. Therefore, for them to access their accounts, they hadto have a password. To ensure that the whole process was automatedtools such as AOHell were developed. It, therefore, became hard forphishers to defraud the process because of AOL countermeasures and by1997, most of them hard left for other accounts (Kizza2013).


Kizza,J. M. (2013). Guideto computer network security.London: Springer.

Mitic,S. (2009). Stoppingidentity theft: 10 easy steps to security.Berkeley, Calif: Nolo.

Ortmeier,P.J. (2013). Introductionto security: Operations and management(4thed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.

Wilhelm,T., &amp Andress, J. (2011). Ninjahacking: Unconventional penetration testing tactics and techniques.Burlington, MA: Syngress/Elsevier.