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Hacker gets jail time for selling rooted cable boxes

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 29 Jun 2012 14:06 User comments (15)

Hacker gets jail time for selling rooted cable boxes Cable modem modifier Ryan Harris has received jail time for selling rooted cable boxes to customers who wished to not pay for their cable access.
Authorities had claimed Harris was selling hacked cable modems and software "that allowed users to bypass restrictions that providers placed on cable modems to filter content and cap usage."

The hacker was sentenced to three year in prison for the alleged $1 million scheme.

Says US District Judge Mark L. Wolf: "I think you committed a very serious crime." Harris was convicted on seven counts of wire fraud for selling the hacked modems.

Harris sold the rooted boxes which allowed buyers to steal free Internet or bypass any kind of speed/bandwidth limits. Harris sold the boxes via his company TCNiSO, for up to $99.99. Additionally, he included tools and software to help users steal access. Finally, Harris published the book "Hacking the Cable Modem: What Cable Companies Don't Want You to Know."

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15 user comments

129.6.2012 14:24

lol damn now that I know I want to buy one



229.6.2012 14:42

I'm going to self-publish a book called "How Not to Publish a Book That Encourages Others to Commit Crimes That You're Presently Committing For Dummies".

329.6.2012 15:20

'06 eBook:
http://nostarch.com/index.php?q=cablemodem.htm#toc

How "The Angel" helped 15,000 people
http://bit.ly/NLJs5Y

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 30 Jun 2012 @ 17:56

Live Free or Die.
The rule above all the rules is: Survive !
Capitalism: Funnel most of the $$$ to the already rich.

429.6.2012 20:17

Anything out there for the DSL user? Not that I want one. Just curious. ; )

529.6.2012 20:32

Originally posted by cpspoo:
I'm going to self-publish a book called "How Not to Publish a Book That Encourages Others to Commit Crimes That You're Presently Committing For Dummies".
Yes, he was an idiot. He probably placed an ad in craigslist that said,"Why pay a high monthly fee for cable internet when, for only a one time charge of $99, you can have unlimited internet at top speed!" Plus a large sign on his front lawn.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 29 Jun 2012 @ 20:33

630.6.2012 2:35

I'm all about punishment for the "stealing" part but not at all about it for the removal of speed caps. Perhaps if the broadband/tv/ISP market was more competitive and not so monopolistic, people like this would have less of a need to exist but every month I pay my bill.........I feel like I'm being screwed and extorted.

I have a whopping choice of 2 cable companies. Comcast or ATT. ATT has better service here and quad tuners and I'm anti-Comcast through and through. Bring about 5 or 6 and see prices drop.

F them! Now I just got myself all pissed off.

730.6.2012 4:49

o great another petty hacker thats gonna go to jail and come out a jail harded violent criminal.


custom built gaming pc from early 2010,ps2 with 15 games all original,ps3 500gbs with 5 games all original,yamaha amp and 5.1channel surround sound speakers,46inch sony lcd smart tv.

830.6.2012 10:28

That sucks, they should have just made him pay the money back and put him on house arrest, its not like he killed anyone. He just stole from billion dollar companies to make a few extra on his end.

930.6.2012 14:53

he profited

Originally posted by biglo30:
That sucks, they should have just made him pay the money back and put him on house arrest, its not like he killed anyone. He just stole from billion dollar companies to make a few extra on his end.
he profited if he really cared he would have disclosed his methods and shared with the world. instead he made money from thievery and should be held accountable.

1030.6.2012 19:46
damedash
Unverified new user

Originally posted by hearme0:
I'm all about punishment for the "stealing" part but not at all about it for the removal of speed caps. Perhaps if the broadband/tv/ISP market was more competitive and not so monopolistic, people like this would have less of a need to exist but every month I pay my bill.........I feel like I'm being screwed and extorted.

I have a whopping choice of 2 cable companies. Comcast or ATT. ATT has better service here and quad tuners and I'm anti-Comcast through and through. Bring about 5 or 6 and see prices drop.

F them! Now I just got myself all pissed off.
I am so anti Comcast to bro, they ripped me off long enough, i dropped them 6 months ago, do to them not helping me out ever, if there is something you need, or just to figure out the bill, its all bullshit, and they are the biggest scum (Besides Walmart:) bags on earth. I don't think he should go to prison for it either, the way i see it, its a crime, but its not a crime to charge so much for something that cost them so little..

111.7.2012 2:51

I have to admit to hacking cable modems when I was a teenager. My ISP when I was 14/15 was providing us with a 512kbps / 128kbps service, only what we got was far lower than that.

I had a Motorola Surfboard and it was vulnerable to the old TFTP server trick. Basically, you found out the IP address of the TFTP server of your ISP and used a tool (from TCNiSO) to download the config .bin file that your modem was remotely set to download (another TCNiSO tool would probe the Motorola modem for the name of the config file), set your local machine to the same IP address, run TFTP server software with a modified version of the config file (another tool would let you decrypt and edit the DOCSIS config file, and then save it)... then simply reboot the modem and it would retrieve the modified config file from your computer instead of from your ISP's server.

Later on with an upgraded modem I had to use different software to do something similar, only this time you had to flood tftp packets to the modem and hope to trick it into using the config file you provided.

Of course now I'm an adult and don't do such things ;-) But then again with modern cable networks, where's the need to do so? I'm currently on 60Mbps, does me just fine :-) The only modifications I've made are to some wireless routers I had, where i flashed ddWRT firmware instead of the stock firmware to add some functionality or to allow me to use a wireless access point as a repeater etc.

121.7.2012 5:27

Should be the other way around, this guy should not be going to prison. These ISP's already screw over so many people with there monopolies. I think prison time should be kept for people who have hurt people physically. I doubt they would consider it since prisons make tons of money hence why the U.S. has more people in prison then any other country.

131.7.2012 13:26

Create the book and leave. That's what somebody smart would have done.

141.7.2012 22:01

Rooted modems lol deff not the proper name for them, they use diagnostic firmware that its provided to the isp by the manufacturers, a lot egitimate uses for them. sbhakcer.net..

155.7.2012 11:34

Good God Almighty, did this guy have a really poor attorney or what??


Geordie in Houston...

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