A hacker doing time in the UK for hacking, ended up taking an IT course the prison offers inmates to prepare themselves for a successful entry back into society upon their release, ended up breaking into the prison’s mainframe.
Nicholas Webber, 21, the founder of the GhostMarket online forum where cyber crooks were able to trade stolen credit card details, tools to commit computer offenses, and knowledge, is the inmate enrolled in the IT class at HMP Isis prison in South London, according to a report in the Daily Mail of London. Apparently, his actions caused ‘major panic’ but it is not clear what, if anything, he managed to access.
Arrested two years ago along with a few accomplices and sentenced to five years in prison, Webber ended up included in the group that took IT lessons provided by the prison in order to teach inmates skills that would help them once they got out.
This incident would have stayed quiet but the prison’s IT teacher, Michael Fox, has an unfair dismissal case against the prison.
Fox said after they discovered the hack, he was held responsible for it and dismissed first by the prison, and then to his employers at the Kensington and Chelsea College where is also worked as a teacher.
He said he was not knowledgeable of Webber’s hacking background and that, ultimately, he wasn’t the one who allowed him to attend the lessons in the first place.
“At the time of this incident in 2011 the educational computer system at HMP Isis was a closed network. No access to personal information or wider access to the Internet or other prison systems would have been possible,” said a Prison Service spokesman.
Further details were not immediately available.