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Chronology of the Hacker Crackdown

1865 U.S. Secret Service (USSS) founded. 1876 Alexander Graham Bell invents telephone. 1878 First teenage males flung off phone system by enraged authorities. 1939 "Futurian" science-fiction group raided by Secret Service. 1971 Yippie phone phreaks start YIPL/TAP magazine. 1972 Ramparts magazine seized in blue-box rip-off scandal. 1978 Ward Christenson and Randy Suess create first personal computer bulletin board system. 1982 William Gibson coins term "cyberspace." 1982 "414 Gang" raided. 1983-1983 AT&T dismantled in divestiture. 1984 Congress passes Comprehensive Crime Control Act giving USSS jurisdiction over credit card fraud and computer fraud. 1984 "Legion of Doom" formed. 1984. 2600: The Hacker Quarterly founded. 1984. Whole Earth Software Catalog published. 1985. First police "sting" bulletin board systems established. 1985. Whole Earth 'Lectronic Link computer conference (WELL) goes on-line. 1986 Computer Fraud and Abuse Act passed. 1986 Electronic Communications Privacy Act passed. 1987 Chicago prosecutors form Computer Fraud and Abuse Task Force. 1988 July. Secret Service covertly videotapes "SummerCon" hacker convention. September. "Prophet" cracks BellSouth AIMSX computer network and downloads E911 Document to his own computer and to Jolnet. September. AT&T Corporate Information Security informed of Prophet's action. October. Bellcore Security informed of Prophet's action. 1989 January. Prophet uploads E911 Document to Knight Lightning. February 25. Knight Lightning publishes E911 Document in Phrack electronic newsletter. May. Chicago Task Force raids and arrests "Kyrie." June. "NuPrometheus League" distributes Apple Computer proprietary software. June 13. Florida probation office crossed with phone-sex line in switching-station stunt. July. "Fry Guy" raided by USSS and Chicago Computer Fraud and Abuse Task Force. July. Secret Service raids "Prophet," "Leftist," and "Urvile" in Georgia. 1990 January 15. Martin Luther King Day Crash strikes AT&T long-distance network nationwide. January 18-19 Chicago Task Force raids Knight Lightning in St. Louis. January 24. USSS and New York State Police raid "Phiber Optik," "Acid Phreak," and "Scorpion" in New York City. February 1. USSS raids "Terminus" in Maryland. February 3. Chicago Task Force raids Richard Andrews' home. February 6. Chicago Task Force raids Richard Andrews' business. February 6. USSS arrests Terminus, Prophet, Leftist, and Urvile. February 9. Chicago Task Force arrests Knight Lightning. February 20. AT&T Security shuts down public-access "attctc" computer in Dallas. February 21. Chicago Task Force raids Robert Izenberg in Austin. March 1. Chicago Task Force raids Steve Jackson Games, Inc., "Mentor," and "Erik Bloodaxe" in Austin. May 7,8,9. USSS and Arizona Organized Crime and Racketeering Bureau conduct "Operation Sundevil" raids in Cincinnatti, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, Newark, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, Richmond, Tucson, San Diego, San Jose, and San Francisco. May. FBI interviews John Perry Barlow re NuPrometheus case. June. Mitch Kapor and Barlow found Electronic Frontier Foundation; Barlow publishes Crime and Puzzlement manifesto. July 24-27. Trial of Knight Lightning. 1991 February. CPSR Roundtable in Washington, D.C. March 25-28. Computers, Freedom and Privacy conference in San Francisco. May 1. Electronic Frontier Foundation, Steve Jackson, and others file suit against members of Chicago Task Force. July 1-2. Switching station phone software crash affects Washington, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, San Francisco. September 17. AT&T phone crash affects New York City and three airports.

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