Chaos Computer Club

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The Chaos Computer Club (CCC) is an organization of hackers. The CCC is based in Germany and other German-speaking countries and currently has over 4,000 members.

The CCC describes itself as "a galactic community of life forms, independent of age, sex, race or societal orientation, which strives across borders for freedom of information...." In general, the CCC advocates more transparency in government, freedom of information, and human right to communication. Supporting the principles of the hacker ethic, the club also fights for free access to computers and technological infrastructure for everybody.[citation needed]

Contents

History

The CCC was founded in Berlin on September 12, 1981 at the Kommune 1's table in the rooms of the newspaper Die Tageszeitung by Wau Holland and others in anticipation of the prominent role that information technology would play in the way people live and communicate.

The CCC became world famous when they drew public attention to the security flaws of the German Bildschirmtext computer network by causing it to debit a bank in Hamburg DM 134,000 in favor of the club. The money was returned the next day in front of the press. Prior to the incident, the system provider had failed to react to proof of the security flaw provided by the CCC, claiming to the public that their system was safe. Bildschirmtext was the biggest commercially available online system targeted at the general public in its region at that time, run and heavily advertised by the German telecommunications agency (Deutsche Bundespost) which also strove to keep up-to-date alternatives out of the market.[citation needed]

In 1989, the CCC was peripherally involved in the first cyberespionage case to make international headlines. A group of German hackers led by Karl Koch, who was loosely affiliated with the CCC, was arrested for breaking into US government and corporate computers and selling operating-system source code to the Soviet KGB.

Several of the CCC's early exploits are documented in a paper[1], written by Digital Equipment Corporation's lead European Investigator of the CCC's activities in the 1980s and 1990s. These include the CCC protests against French nuclear tests and members of the CCC involved with the German Green Party.

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