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Wargames and the start of the hacker era

On June 4, 2008, in Security, by Administrator
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Neat little essay snagged via Slashdot.  Wargames and Sneakers still stand as two of my favorite films about computer security.

I thought that WarGames also merited mentioning (in addition to it being a terrific film) because of the reaction that it engendered upon its release. With its depiction of teens hacking into school systems to change their own grades, and then breaking into military-grade mainframes and coming a hair’s-breadth from nuking the whole planet, WarGames initiated unusual paranoia in the mainstream press about the power of computers. I remember one CBS Evening News report at the time that seriously questioned whether parents should allow their children to access the outside world via their personal computers at home. A magazine article suggested that computer modems be “locked up” just like firearms, to keep them out of the reach of teenagers. I even heard one pundit proclaim that there was no need for regular people to be able to log in to a remote system: that if you need to access your bank account, a friendly teller was just a short drive away. [Link—>]

 

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