Cracking Down on Criminals in the Tech World

Dennis Faas's picture

Evidently, crime doesn't pay, even in the tech world.

Although it seems that in the land of Microsoft, PDAs, and Google criminals routinely get away with their crimes (even as corporate entities in various industries, like music, begin to get tough), there is evidence that the courts are fighting back. In the last week two major sentences have been handed down, including a three year jail term for a botnet attacker and a six year lockup for a software pirate.

Christopher Maxwell, 21, pleaded guilty in May of launching a computer attack that affected tens of thousands of systems. Last Friday, he received his sentence of three years in jail plus three years of supervised release from official charges of conspiracy and intentionally causing damage to a protected computer.

In addition, Maxwell was also charged with conspiracy to commit a computer fraud. U.S. District Judge Marsha J. Pechman clearly intended to make an example of Maxwell, telling the guilty party that the sentence should act as a "deterrence for all those youth out there who are squirreled away in their basements hacking." (Source:

Although Maxwell was hit hard for his actions, a Florida man found guilty of running a pirated software website was sentenced to an even longer sentence. Danny Ferrer, age undisclosed, profited immensely from selling pirated materials by companies like Adobe.

According to sources, Ferrer led quite a life as a software pirate, purchasing sports cars, boats, and airplanes. Unfortunately for him, he'll be returning all of these little indulgences, along with $4.1 million. Ferrer will have six years in prison to think of a new profession that pays like that. (Source:

I suggest real estate.

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